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Friday, January 3, 2014

Local high school robotics teams net $35,000 in grants

The Windsor Star/Beatrice Fantoni

Several local high school robotics teams received a hefty funding boost from the Chrysler Foundation last week to help them build the best robots for the 2014 competition season.

The robotics teams at Assumption, Harrow, Holy Names, Maranatha Christian Academy, Sandwich, Vincent Massey and Walkerville high schools each received $5,000 grants to help with their projects as  well as tournament and travel costs.

Some of these teams are veterans of the global FIRST Robotics competitions (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology).

The countdown to the 2014 FIRST Robotics tournament season starts about now. Over the next six weeks, these teams will build and test their robots, which must accomplish an assigned task.

The seven local high schools are the only Ontario schools to receive Chrysler Foundation grants from the 41 selected in the U.S. and Canada.

Along with funding, Chrysler is also involved in local high school robotics through mentoring. New Windsor Coun. Irek Kusmierczyk, program developer for WEtech Alliance, said there are already about 10 Chrysler engineers mentoring the local robotics teams. His hope is to triple that number in the coming months.

Windsor will also host the inaugural Windsor Essex Great Lakes Regional robotics competition this year.

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