Falcon BEST robotics competition attracts record number of participants

More than 300 students could be considering a career in engineering because of a recent BGSU sponsored robotics competition that pairs young people with industry leaders and academic mentors.

On Saturday, October 8, the College of Technology, Architecture and Applied Engineering and the Northwest Ohio Center for Excellence in STEM Education hosted its fourth annual Falcon BEST (Boosting Engineering, Science and Technology) Robotics Competition. The theme of this year’s competition was Bet the Farm.

BG's event attracted 17 high school teams — the most ever to participate at BGSU — from Northwest Ohio and Indiana.

“We are learning more than how to use tools to build something. We are learning how to implement each other’s ideas and work together to create a robot that is unique and special to us,” said Alexandra Derrer, a Cardinal Stritch student.

 BEST is a national six-week competition in the United States designed to help young people interested in engineering careers. The winners of BG’s competition move on to the next round in Fargo, North Dakota, in December.

Several hundred fans attended the BG competition at the Stroh Center, which included a variety of events: robotics, marketing, engineering notebook, website, T-shirt, video and spirit. The day highlighted the many facets of engineering, encouraged teamwork and brought together high school students and industry mentors. The sponsors of the event were BGSU, Lathrop and First Solar. 

“The event continues to get bigger and better,” said Dr. Mohammad Mayyas, hub director for the BGSU event. “It is so gratifying to see students get excited about engineering, science and technology. The amount of work that went into creating the engineering notebooks, the robots and the marketing displays were a testament to the growing interest in this line of work.”

The participating schools were: Anthony Wayne High School, Bowling Green High School, Cardinal Stritch Catholic High School, EHOVE Career Center, Hamilton Southeastern High School, Maumee Valley Country Day School, McComb High School, Millstream Career Center, Patrick Henry High School, Paulding High School, Perrysburg High School, Port Clinton High School, Sandusky Central Catholic School, St. Francis de Sales School, St. Ursula Academy, Sylvania Southview High School and Vanguard Technology Center.