Science Central will host the 13th annual FIRST® LEGO® League Indiana Qualifying Tournament on Sunday, November 15, 2015. Twelve teams, which include more than 120 students ages 9-14 from Northeast Indiana schools, have been tasked with designing, building and programming a robot. The annual event encourages young students to pursue education and career opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics and will take place between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. An awards ceremony will begin at 2:30 p.m. The public is invited and encouraged to attend the tournament beginning at 12:00 p.m. Admission is $8 per person, ages 3 to adult. Children 2 and under are admitted free.
FIRST® LEGO® League is an international competition with teams of up to 10 elementary and middle school students competing from around the world. Each team participates in the challenge by designing and programming a LEGO® robot to earn points on a playing field. Points will be awarded for how well teams meet the equally-weighted requirements of core values, project presentation, and robot design. Along the way, students will be challenged to develop solutions to problems they identify. This two-part challenge is theme-based, and focuses on finding solutions for real-world problems through the use of science-related topics. This year’s theme is "Trash Trek" and the mission is to make less trash or improve the way people handle the trash we make. The top three teams will go on to the state championship held at IPFW on Saturday, December 12, 2015.
Also on hand this Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. will be eight research scientists from IPFW participating in Portal to the Public. This Science Central program encourages informal interaction and engagement between the general public and area academicians. These researchers will have table-top displays featuring information on their specific areas of research and are encouraging both children and adults to visit and interact with questions and comments.
IPFW scientists participating in the event include:
- Dr. Ben Dattilo, Geosciences
- Dr. Damian Fleming, English & Linguistics
- Max Fowler (graduate student), Computer Engineering
- Dr. Connie Kracher, Dental Education
- Dr. Suzanne LaVere, History
- Dr. Jordan Marshall, Biology
- Dr. Andres Montenegro, Visual Communication & Design
- Dr. Ryan Yoder, Psychology
"This will be an exciting day for our visitors," says executive director Martin Fisher. "Students will use technology to compete in a well-known and respected competition, while local professors will share their research projects in an easy-to-understand way. The best part is that all of this is included with the cost of admission."