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GVSU to host 1,000 students at FIRST Robotics District Competition

  • A photo of students competing a past competition.

Posted on March 20, 2018

More than 1,000 high school students on 40 teams from across West Michigan will compete in the “varsity sport for the mind” March 22-24 at Grand Valley State University. 

The For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) Robotics District Competition will take place in the Fieldhouse on the Allendale Campus. Teams will compete with robots they built and designed for the competition. This year’s game is “Power Up,” which includes two alliances of video game characters and their human operators who are trapped in an arcade game. 

The competition runs throughout the day on March 23 and 24. Grand Valley President Thomas J. Haas will provide opening remarks at 9 a.m. on March 24, and he will present a $20,000 scholarship to two incoming Grand Valley students. 

Complete information, including a detailed schedule and list of teams, is available at

The competition helps students get hands-on experience solving real-world problems and discover the excitement and rewards of science and technology careers. The 2018 season includes more than 3,600 teams — nearly 90,000 high school students and mentors — participating in 160 regional and district events worldwide. Teams work together for six weeks to build, program and test robots with the guidance of adult mentors. Winners will go on to the 2018 FIRST Championship in Houston and Detroit in April. 

FIRST was founded in 1989 to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people. Learn more at

For more information about the event, contact Ken Platteschorre, event coordinator, at or Nicki Bonczyk, volunteer coordinator, at