Special Olympics Unified Robotics, founded last year by King’s 2016 graduate Delaney Foster, held their 2016-17 kick-off event on Monday, October 10th. The event featured keynote speakers from Special Olympics, Microsoft and students who have experienced firsthand the impact of Unified Robotics Club. CyberKnight team coach, Mr. Thompson, introduced the game rules and guidelines for the year. Newport Robotics Team led more than ten schools in team spirit activities. Students interested in joining this year’s club learned about building the robot, programming, and how to form their own teams. The event was graciously hosted by Microsoft.
Unified Robotics is a robotics club designed to make hands on STEM learning available to high school students of all abilities. STEM study is widely and deeply embedded in mainstream education, however students with intellectual disabilities have been left behind. This creates significant problems, because STEM skills are necessary for success and even survival in modern society. Many people with intellectual disabilities are extremely creative and capable, and simply need exposure and training to reach full potential. That is why it was such a huge leap forward when the Unified Robotics Club was created. In its first year, interest exploded and the program was featured by multiple national level broadcast and print outlets.
Special Olympics Washington has incorporated Unified Robotics as a Unified Sport into the Unified Schools programming, formally known as Project UNIFY. If you or anyone you know is interested in starting a Unified program at their own school, please visit unifiedrobotics.org or contact Noelle Foster at firstname.lastname@example.org.