Who? Colmac Robotics Ltd is an Irish Ed-tech start-up in the field of robotics education. Founded in 2013 by Colmán Munnelly and Niall McCormick, the company aims to raise Ireland’s profile as a world leader in robotics.
What? Robotics workshop for local school children held in NUI Galway’s New Engineering Building
Where? New Engineering Building, NUI Galway
When? Thursday 13th February, 2014
Why? Our aim is to provide children with the skills they need to design the world of tomorrow. We decided to run workshops for school children from local Galway primary schools to teach them the basics of robotics, electronics and mechanics using LEGO Mindstorms NXT kits. The events were also used to build our brand and presence in local schools.
The robotics workshops were two hours long and revolved around the competition of Robot Sumo. Children were split into groups of 4 or 5 and were tasked with building a robot with some sort of attachment to flip the opposing robot or push it out of the way. Each team had a mentor who was a Third Year engineering student from a variety of disciplines, including civil, electrical, electronic, computing, mechanical, and sports & exercise.
As we are a small start-up we do not have many staff so Niall took the lead on these workshops with the help of 22 willing student volunteers from NUI Galway!
The response was fantastic! In less than two hours, the children had designed, built, programmed and battled LEGO sumo robots. Their teachers were very impressed with how much the students could learn on what is quite a complex topic in such a short period of time.
We thoroughly enjoyed the workshops and being part of Engineers Week 2014. I would recommend it to any company or organization in the engineering sector. We’re planning more events for 2015 already!!