Saturday 4 April, 2020

More than 30 high schools to compete in robotics championship

Participating students were joined by Janvo Aldred, Lead-Software Developer at MC Systems, Alando Terrelonge, State Minister of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Gavin Samuels - Affiliate Partner Representative, FTC Jamaica at the FTC JA Robotics Championship launch held at the NCB Wellness & Recreation Centre recently.

Participating students were joined by Janvo Aldred, Lead-Software Developer at MC Systems, Alando Terrelonge, State Minister of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Gavin Samuels - Affiliate Partner Representative, FTC Jamaica at the FTC JA Robotics Championship launch held at the NCB Wellness & Recreation Centre recently.

Since its first staging in 2019, the First Tech Challenge Robotics Championship has grown from 14 registered teams to 31 registered teams and is staying true to the title – the biggest robotics championship in the Caribbean.

First Tech Challenge Jamaica (FTC Jamaica) officially launched the second staging of the First Tech Challenge Robotics Championship powered by the NCB Foundation, the event’s title sponsor.

Special guest speaker, Dr Parris Lyew-Ayee Jr, Director at the Mona GeoInformatics Institute passionately emphasized the need for Science, Technology, Education and Mathematics (STEM) focused programmes such as the First Tech Challenge Robotics Championship in Jamaica.

“We can’t want to be like China or Singapore where STEM is front and centre without the compromise of giving more focus to STEM development. First Tech Challenge is helping the nation get to that place by equipping students with the necessary skills to function in a STEM-driven society.” he expressed during his message.

CEO of the NCB Foundation, Nadeen Matthews-Blair shows the audience how easy it is to drive Glenmuir High School’s robot, Fr3d, during the launch of the FTC Ja Robotics Championship held at the NCB Wellness & Recreation Centre recently.

Alando Terrelonge, State Minister of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information also gave a passionate address FTC team members and students from the Glenmuir High School and Dunoon Technical High School Robotics Teams.

In his address, he highlighted the “Key C’s” that the Ministry of Education wants students to embody going forward into the fourth industrial revolution.

“The Key C’s are communication, creativity, collaboration and critical thinking. This is the future of Jamaica,” he stated. He also expressed that as a nation, “we must become the innovators and producers of technology. STEM is much more than robotics. It is about the growth and prosperity of our youth and nation.”

FTC is an international organization dedicated to stimulating youth interaction with STEM concepts through robotics. The competition which is usually held in the US saw Jamaica College as the only school steadily participating from Jamaica starting in 2009.

In 2018 the New York Chapter of the Jamaica College Old Boys Association partnered with the Jamaica College Foundation to secure the rights to host a local event.

This year’s two-day event will be held from Friday, February 28, 2020, to Saturday, February 29, 2020, at Jamaica’s College’s Karl Hendrickson Auditorium starting at 10 am.

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