St. Joe robotics teams win most awards; Lincoln, Sissonville earn top drone honors

Teams from St. Joseph Grade School in Huntington battled their way to winning four of six awards in the Marshall University VEX IQ Robotics Qualifier hosted Dec. 3 by Marshall’s Robert C. Byrd Institute (RCBI).

The St. Joseph Darth Vexers team captured the Excellence Award – Middle School Division and was named Robot Skills Champion. The Darth Vexers also won the Teamwork Championship Award along with another St. Joseph team, the Wet Mopz.

Both St. Joseph teams will advance to the State Championship Tournament March 23, 2023, in Fairmont, along with Bot Squad-B from Cedar Grove Elementary in Kanawha County, which captured the Excellence Award – Elementary School Division. Buffalo Middle School in Wayne County garnered the Judges Award and the Cedar Grove’s Bot Squad-A won the Design Award.

The VEX IQ Robotics Qualifier was the first of two days of robotics and aerial drone competitions presented Dec. 3 and 4 by RCBI at Marshall/Mountwest Aviation Maintenance Technology Program facilities at Huntington Tri-State Airport. Teams from across West Virginia and southern Ohio competed by programming and maneuvering their robots and drones through a series of obstacles while performing tasks to score points.

In the Aerial Drone Competition – one of the largest to date in the U.S. – teams from Sissonville High School and Lincoln County High School were named Tournament Champions. The Knight Flyers from Cabell Midland High School captured the Excellence Award. The Lincoln County team also was named Autonomous Flight Champion. Other award winners were Hayes Middle School in Kanawha County – Flight Operations Award, Riverside High School – Programming Award, Guyan Valley Middle School in Lincoln County – Inspire Award, and the Flying Solo team from Sissonville High School in Kanawha County – Judges Award.

The top-scoring drone teams in the RCBI tournament may qualify to compete in the World Championship after other regional events conclude and all scores are tallied.

As a component of its ongoing STEM education outreach, RCBI has sponsored robotics and drone camps, workshops and tournaments since 2014 in collaboration with the West Virginia Robotics Alliance and the Katherine Johnson NASA West Virginia IV&V Education Resource Center with support from the NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium. For more information about RCBI’s STEM programs, contact Deacon Stone at 304.781.1659 or .

Dec. 24, 2022

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