Thursday, September 10, 2015

A Day at Work with Robots!

EMC Utah 2015 VEX Robotics Competition
Yesterday was a great day for EMC Utah. We had a “Snow Cone Social” and VEX Robotics competition for our employees and 3 local high schools. It was a great opportunity for us to accomplish a few of the things that we’ve been focusing on this year, namely showing we care about the community in which we live and sparking conversations about opportunities for learning and growth. Three different employee teams got together and built robots using the same kits we donate to local schools. They used the same competition field and rules that the schools use informal matches. 

Snow cones for EMC employees!

The Snow cones were a big hit!

It was very exciting to see the pride that they took in their work. There was a great spirit of camaraderie and teamwork in the midst of the competition. One clear example of this is the challenge of having one robot lift another robot in a friendly way. The teams that do that get extra points. 

The VEX Competition field 

Some of the high school students that came were seeing live robots in action for the first time. They took lots of notes and videos. Davis High School actually won the VEX Robotics World Championships last year. It was great to have representation from them. Hunter High School brought several of the robots they used in last year’s competition and let others control them. Hillcrest High School had the biggest turnout of all and it was great to meet their students and feel their enthusiasm. Robots are such a great way to interact with technology because there are so many disciplines involved:
  • Strategy & design
  • Project planning & execution
  • Software development
  • Hardware engineering
  • Troubleshooting
  • Competition
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Fundraising 

Pleasant Grove (Mozy) Robotics Team
While we don’t build or even use robots in most EMC jobs, the skills learned through STEM programs like robotics are used everyday! EMC is a big promoter of other STEM programs in addition to robotics, but it is one of the most tangible and exciting ones. If you haven’t seen or heard about VEX Robotics, check out their website. If you haven’t heard about STEM Utah and the Curiosity Unleashed education campaign, you should check that out too! Thanks to everyone who participated yesterday and thanks to everyone who is supporting other STEM programs here in the Silicon Slopes of Utah! - VC 

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