FIRST GM Teams Rack & Roll to Great Heights

General Motors is a proud sponsor of Robotics. (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is an organization that allows students to experience Mathematics, Science and Engineering through the use of robotics. The teams have six weeks to design, build and test their robots before competition. GM St. Catharines sponsors two local teams: Governor Simcoe Secondary School and Westlane Secondary School.

In three regional events our teams have combined reached the semi-finals six times, the finals three times and have won two regional events. We have also won four technical and non-technical awards including the outstanding mentor award; presented to GM’s very own Derek Bessette. We are very pleased with the...

Source: General Motors Monthly

Robot woes fail to lower students’ high-tech spirit

In a blink of an eye, the pair of 11-year-old engineers-in-the-making watched two months of hard work collapse before their eyes.

Drew Rhora, his eyes the size of dinner plates, squeezed the top of his head with both hands in frustration. His robot was paralyzed and the clock was ticking.

Rhora’s teammate Michael Ferrara frantically ripped the robot apart, hoping to pull off a miracle and get the Lego bot working before time to complete an obstacle course ran out.

“It worked fine before, I swear!” Ferrara said after the Saturday afternoon event at Niagara College. “I really don’t understand why it didn’t work. I guess we’ll just have to do better next time.”


Source: Grant LaFleche, writer for The Standard

Kids in robotics competition could help address labour shortage skilled trades

My wife and I had the pleasure of attending the recent Waterloo regional robotics competition where the Triplets robotics teams competed.

My daughter is a member of the Governor Simcoe team and we were totally amazed at the energy and excitement of the competition. I did not believe this until my daughter told me to take the excitement of winning a regional ringette championship and multiply it by 10.

She was right.

With more than 1000 in attendance, the robots battled, the kids scouted, cheered, made adjustments and supported each other.

Not everyone drives robots but every does have a job to do and they are all part of the team. I’m impressed at the effort and commitment in getting kids in out high...

Source: Al Davies, Letter to the Editor

High schoolers show a gift for gadgetry

A St. Catharines high school helped its team to robotics competition glory by teaching its five-foot mechanized create to bend it like Beckham.

Using the skills of famed British soccer play David Beckham as a model and namesake for their robot, students from Governor Simcoe Secondary School’s award-winning Simbotics club led their team to capture first in the Great Lakes regional For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology () robotics competition in Ypsilanti, Mich., last weekend.

The goal of this competition was to win a game, a complex cross between soccer, football, hockey and basketball.

In the finals, two teams of three robots take to a carpeted field and try to school goals with rubber...

Source: DSBN News Release

Governor Simcoe gets top marks for FIRST

Governor Simcoe Secondary School’s Robotics Team is heading to Atlanta, Georgia for an international robotics tournament after being named Overall Champion at a recent competition in the United States. The (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) team competed against 20 other teams from the United States and Singapore in the 2006 Delaware VEX Challenge Championship at the University of Delaware to capture the title.

The VEX Challenge is different from other Robotics Challenges. The competition requires teams to design, build and program a robot using a specialized VEX kit containing all the necessary components. The robots face off in human-controlled and autonomous matches.

In addition to being...

Source: District School Board of Niagara News Release

Niagara FIRST Robotics Team Win "Triple Play" in Toronto

GM Powertrain St. Catharines has been a supporter of FIRSTTM Robotics (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in the Niagara region since 2002. In partnership with Governor Simcoe Secondary School, “Simbotics” was formed and has competed in two FIRSTTM Robotics seasons receiving several awards and inspiring local youth to pursue careers in science and technology.

Since then, significant growth has occurred in Niagara with the creation of is a collaborative organization of high school and elementary school teams in the Niagara Region of Ontario, Canada participating in the FIRSTTM Robotics Competitions and LEGOTM ...

Source: Scoreboard