DC hosts FIRST® Robotics Competition and offers students glimpse of college life

While competing in the FIRST® Robotics Competition (FRC) Ontario District Durham College (DC) event on March 3 and 4, high school students from across the province also got a first look at where they could be headed next while visiting the college’s Oshawa campus.

For the fourth year in a row, DC hosted more than 1,000 of the province’s brightest young minds, along with their mentors, family, friends and fellow robot enthusiasts, at the annual event. Competitors demonstrated their technological and engineering skills and knowledge as they operated five-feet-tall, 140-pound robots they had designed and built in only six weeks.

Teams competed in this year’s intensive arcade-themed game, FIRST® POWER UPSM. Robot fans enjoyed watching teams play the game that saw them trapped in an 8bit-video-game world and use power cubes to defeat the game’s boss.

During the competition’s opening ceremony both DC president Don Lovisa and FIRST® alum/DC Mechanical Engineering Technology student Donald Bark encouraged the crowd to take advantage of their time at the college to explore the campus. In particular, FIRST® competitors were directed to the Integrated Manufacturing Centre, where robot repairs and tune ups were being offered by DC faculty and students using the facility’s industrial-grade equipment.

After two days of intensive battles, organized with the help of numerous, dedicated volunteers, the following teams comprising the Red Alliance were declared district champions:

  • Team 610 – Crescent School Coyotes, North York
  • Team 4476 – W.A.F.F.L.E.S Community Robotics, Kingston
  • Team 6110 – Archbishop Denis O’Connor Catholic High School Doc Botics, Ajax

Students had a lot of fun while gaining real-world engineering experience, developing leadership skills and learning to work as a team under pressure and tight timelines.

Winners of the DC event now move on to the FIRST® Ontario Provincial Championship at the Hershey Centre in Mississauga, April 12 to 14, where they will compete for a spot at the World Championships that will be held in Detroit, Michigan, from April 25 to 28.

Learn more about FRC.