Robotics students to compete in first-ever Governor’s CupBy BEA LEWIS
Union Leader Correspondent
October 08. 2018 11:11PM
PLYMOUTH — Up to 50 high school seniors will have the chance to earn a one-semester scholarship to a New Hampshire public university, college or community college in The Governor’s Cup, an off-season robotics competition for the state’s FIRST Robotics Competition teams.
Hosted by Plymouth State University in its Active Living, Learning, and Wellness (ALLWell) North complex, the event will take place Saturday. More than 20 FIRST Robotics Competition teams from high schools across the state are expected to participate in the inaugural event.
“A crucial part of shaping the workforce of the future is ensuring that every child in the Granite State, regardless of zip code, had an opportunity to pursue a career in the STEM fields,” Gov. Chris Sununu said.
The governor has partnered with FIRST New Hampshire, the University System of New Hampshire, the Community College System of New Hampshire, Eversource, BAE Systems and Fidelity to present the event that offers students an opportunity to further develop their STEM skills in a fun and competitive environment.
“This is a total home run for Granite State students,” FIRST founder Dean Kamen said. “Now, more than ever, it is essential that we inspire young people to engage in STEM. Here in New Hampshire, with our population aging and more of our high school seniors leaving the state, our businesses are challenged to find the skilled workers they need.”
Competing teams will find themselves trapped in an 8-bit video game. Each three-team alliance has three ways to help defeat the boss: Tipping the scale or alliance’s switch in their favor to earn points; exchanging power cubes for power-ups (force, boost and levitate) to gain a timed, temporary advantage during the match; and climbing the scale tower to face the boss. The alliance with the highest score at match’s end defeats the boss and wins the game.
“As a university, we value the FIRST Robotics mission to inspire students to collaborate, innovate and acquire skills to help them become leaders,” PSU President Donald L. Birx said.
To be eligible for scholarships, seniors must have competed in the 2017-18 FIRST Robotics Competition season and must be participating this season, including in The Governor’s Cup. The scholarships will be awarded to seniors on the three teams of the winning alliance and will be equal to a semester of tuition at any of New Hampshire’s public colleges, universities and community colleges. Additional $2,000 scholarships will be presented to five seniors who are nominated by their coaches and mentors.
“Supporting workforce development efforts that will help power our economy and enrich our communities for years to come is one of the many ways Eversource is working to power the possible for New Hampshire,” Eversource New Hampshire President Bill Quinlan said.
The event is free and open to the public. Go to www.firstnh.org/governors-cup for more information.