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The VEX Robotics co-curricular program at Pembroke offers students a unique and engaging, explorative STEM program. Now, three teams from Pembroke are destined for the VEX World Championships in Louisville, Kentucky this year.

16 January 2020

Robotics can appeal to a range of learners who are creative and innovative or enjoy problem-solving or Computer Science. The program is offered to students in Years 7–10, with two streams of VEX Robotics (IQ and EDR) tailored to each age group, respectively. The collaborative nature of the program allows students to become builders, engineers, drivers, programmers, designers, communicators and leaders. Students take ownership of their project, with boys and girls choosing their roles and place in a team.

Students prepare for and have the opportunity to compete against other schools and teams in competition at regional, national and international level, depending on their success.

The VEX Robotics Australian National Championship was held in December 2019 and saw teams from across Australia compete for a chance to represent Australia at the prestigious World Championships to be held in April 2020. Pembroke had four teams qualify for the national event. The event was held at the Adelaide Convention Centre for the first time with the support of the South Australian Government, Ford and SMC with the view that it was an excellent opportunity to promote STEM and related pathways.

The event was incredibly successful for Pembroke with one team winning the prestigious Excellence Award, and a total of three teams winning the opportunity to represent Australia at the Vex World Championships. The Excellence Award is a prestigious award and is the highest award presented in the VEX IQ Challenge in Australia. The award is presented to the team that exemplifies overall excellence in creating a high quality VEX robotics program. We are thrilled that a Pembroke team achieved this award and the placing as the top VEX Robotics team in Australia.

The VEX World Championships will be held in Louisville, Kentucky and will see over 2,000 teams compete from 50 countries from across the world. This is the first time a South Australian school has ever qualified for the world event: and Pembroke has had three teams qualify. It is an incredible achievement for both Pembroke and South Australia and a true reflection of the quality programs and pathways both the School and the state have to offer.

At the World Championships our students will be required to present to a panel which includes tech giants such as Google, Tesla and NASA.

In undertaking Robotics students are developing a wide skill set, which both links to the curriculum and is future oriented. The Robotics program provides an exciting platform for students to develop a range of skills for the future through STEM, and an opportunity to become thinkers, innovators and problem-solvers. We can't wait to share more about our students' achievements at the VEX World Championships.

Thomas Oliphant
Assistant Head of Digital Technology