Minnetronix Teams up with St. Paul School for National Robotics Competition
February 19, 2008
Life-changing program inspires young people to pursue opportunities in science and technology
ST. PAUL, Minn. February 19, 2008 — Minnetronix, a St. Paul-based medical device design and manufacturing firm, has teamed up with St. Paul’s Great River School for the annual FIRST Robotics competition.
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), currently in its seventeenth year, was created in 1989 by Dean Kamen, inventor of the Segway, insulin pump and several other innovative devices. Kamen originally developed the contest to foster an appreciation in young students towards science, engineering and technology. And, the competition is doing just that for this group of Twin Cities high school students.
Great River School students have been excited to learn from Minnetronix’ unique set of mentors with experience in software development and electrical engineering.
The team, self-named “Deep Thought,” is funded by Thomas, McNerney and Partners. The group received a kit of parts made up of motors, batteries, a control system, and a mix of automation components – but no instructions. Working with mentors, students have just six weeks to design, build and test their robots to meet the challenge.
Don Evans, an Electrical Engineer at Minnetronix, also finds inspiration in working with these young students. Evans observes that “While the students are learning a great deal about engineering, two of their greatest lessons are that they must effectively solve problems as a group and that actions of individuals impact the outcome of the whole.”
Evans goes on to say that “During the competition, they’ve improved their team organization and have become more proficient at their individual roles. This has allowed the students to create a better robot as a group than any individual effort.”
The Minnesota Regional FIRST Robotics competition will take place March 27-29, 2008, at Williams Arena and Sports Pavilion at the University of Minnesota, located at 1925 University Avenue SE in Minneapolis. For additional details on the competition, visit www.mnfirstregional.org.
Minnetronix is a medical device outsourcing company, specializing in the design, manufacturing and support of electronics-based medical devices. Minnetronix provides expertise on equipment such as cardiovascular systems, point-of-care diagnostic instruments, therapeutic devices, implantable devices, and monitoring equipment. For more information about Minnetronix, visit www.minnetronixmedical.com.
About Great River School
Founded in 2004, Great River School is a Montessori community that prepares the whole student for a life of scholarship, service and success. As an urban public charter school for grades seven through 12, Great River fosters independence, critical thinking, respect, responsibility to self, others and the earth. For more information about Great River School, visit www.greatriverschool.org.