Clonfert students are the Robotics champions

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Galway daily news Clonfert students are the Robotics champions
The VEX Robotics Competition hosted by ATU Galway on Friday. Photo: Mike Shaughnessy

Students from Clonfert National School faced off hundreds of competitors to claim the prize in high intensity Robotics competition.

Over 300 pupils from primary schools in Galway and Mayo took part in the 2022  VEX IQ competition hosted by Atlantic Technological University (ATU) in Galway City last week.

Students have been hard at work with their classmates and teachers since last September, when they first received their robot kit and game fields.

The months that followed were filled with feverish designing, building and coding work to bring their robots to life.

This came to a head last Friday, when pupils from 17 schools gathered in Galway City to compete in the event which was opened by ATU President Dr Orla Flynn.

Clonfert National School (NS) were declared overall winners of the competition as well as joint winners with Foxford NS in the Teamwork challenge category.

In a double victory for their town, Belmullet schools Glencastle NS and Barnatra NS won the Skills Challenges in the competition.

Niall Kelly, Principal of Clonfert NS said that this was a “fantastic programme that gave wonderful opportunities to the children” taking part.

He enthused about their opportunity to “learn so many different IT skills in an enjoyable fun way” during the competition.

“We are really looking forward to taking part in this exciting event again next year,” Principal Kell said.

Prof Graham Heaslip, Head of the ATU Galway School of Engineering, said that the VEX Robotics competition was a huge success.

“The teamwork, problem-solving and troubleshooting displayed by the students was fantastic.”

“The competition fostered programming and math skills, which will stand to the students as they progress on their individual educational journeys.”

ATU staged the competition last week with volunteers from the staff, as well as Trane Technologies International – Thermo King, Munster Technological University (MTU), and Offaly County Council.

The robot kits were sponsored by Science Foundation Ireland, and the game mats for the kids by Thermo King.