Liverpool children to take part in IFB2016’s fringe festival’s ‘Robot Wars’
Children from across the city will become engineers for a hi-tech challenge and create robots ready for battle.
The Edge IFB2016 Robot Challenge is sponsored by ChargePoint and will see teams of pupils come together to take part in a full-day event at the Innovation Hub at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital on Wednesday, June 15.
The junior engineers will learn new skills in leadership and problem solving while being taught design, science and engineering principles to make the fierce, competition ready robots.
Forty students, aged 13 and above will form 10 teams of four using organisers MerseySTEM’s Protobot System from Vex Robotics to build the machines and pit them against each other in a series of matches.
The Edge is IFB2016’s fringe festival and consists of an innovative, creative and dynamic programme of events that will incorporate three main themes throughout the festival under the headings: ‘conversations with’, ‘how to’ and ‘provocations’.
Managing Director of ChargePoint Technology, Chris Eccles, is a member of Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership Employment & Skills board and a sponsor of Liverpool’s Life Sciences University Technical College and as such a keen advocate of promoting STEM subjects to young people.
He said: “It is vital to teach children about the importance of engineering, design and science. They are three of the most crucial industries in the world and they offer so many employment opportunities.
“The robot challenge will be fun but also very important because it will give children the inspiration to embark on a career in those sectors at a time when our national economy needs to increase these type of skills.
“I am extremely proud to be part of the event and working with MerseySTEM, The Edge and IFB2016, who are all showcasing the best in business and innovation in the Liverpool City Region.”
MerseySTEM’s Managing Director Michelle Dow said: “I love our Robot Challenges, it’s great that we don’t see our competitors’ faces for most of the morning as they are heads down, focused on building the best robot on the day.
“The robot days give us the opportunity to change perceptions, challenge stereotypes, promote teamwork and provide careers advice to students using real role-models from our city. Robot Wars are nothing new, but whatever you say – robots are cool!
“The students are always so excited and it’s great to see them so passionate about engineering. We can't wait to work with ChargePoint Technology as part of The Edge IFB 2016. This is going to be big and not to be missed.”
Andrew Rose, from the Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, who are supporting The Edge, said: "The Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership supports the region's innovation economy by supporting sector and company growth.
“ChargePoint Technology, Alder Hey Children's Hospital and MerseySTEM exemplify the region's innovative culture and determination to improve its prosperity, with the young people participating in the robot challenge being central to the region's future success on the global stage."
IFB2016 is being delivered in partnership with UK Trade & Investment, the GREAT Britain campaign and with the support of the UK Government.
It is expected to attract thousands of international SMEs and high-level delegates from some of the world’s fastest growing economies.
The three week summer gathering of inspirational speakers, business networking and over 80 events will be clustered round three themes: manufacturing, creative and digital, and energy and environment.
IFB2016 Festival Director Kate Willard said: “The Robot challenge provides young people with a great chance to have fun working together - whilst at the same time changing their perceptions on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
“These young people are our future workforce so it’s important that we enthuse them all about these critical subjects - and what cooler way to do this than building robots.”