Walmart Grants Support VEX Robotics Teams in World Competition
Julie Anderson Washburn, Lexington One Educational Foundation Executive Director
Megan Moore, Lexington District One Communications Director
NEWS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 25, 2023, LEXINGTON, S.C. — The Walmart Foundation generously provided $4,000 in grants to the Lexington One Educational Foundation to support two Lexington District One school VEX robotics teams from the Lexington Technology Center and River Bluff High School. This generous donation provided financial assistance for both teams as they recently traveled to Dallas, Texas, to compete in the 2023 VEX Robotics World Championship.
Over the two-week competition, VEX Robotics invited about 2900 teams to compete in the 2023 VEX Robotics Worlds Championship across elementary, middle, high, college, and JROTC levels. Those 2900 teams represented the top 10% of the registered teams who competed at their state or regional level to qualify for an invitation.
Lexington Technology Center (LTC) Teachers Melissa Boehler and Daniel Cummins were extremely grateful to the Educational Foundation and the Walmart Foundation for this generous support. Boehler shared, “Lexington Technology Center’s 44252A team, Titanium, qualified for the second year in a row. After competing in their division, Research, Titanium missed eliminations, but finished overall in the top 6% of teams in the world, proudly representing Lexington District One and South Carolina. The team also received a nomination for the Best Pit or Booth Area for the High School Division.”
River Bluff High School (RBHS) Teacher Horst Daichendt coaches the RBHS VEX Robotics Team, the Swamp Bots, and he, too, appreciated the generous support of his students and teachers who traveled to the competition. Daichendt shared, “During the VEX World Competition, the team competed in 10 qualifying matches. The team ranked 45 out of 81 teams in the “Innovate” Division, which is one of 10 divisions in the Worlds Finals. Due to ranking, the team wasn’t selected to form an alliance to play in the elimination matches of their division. However, team members Alex Daichendt, Roshni Murganandam, and Mason Kelly volunteered to help with the scoring in elimination matches in other divisions, and, as a result of their teamwork, professionalism and student-center ethos, the Swamp Bots received the Judges Award for their division!”
In recent years the Lexington One Educational Foundation has provided significant grant support to Lexington District One’s robotics teams and, in particular, to VEX Robotics teams at our middle and high schools. Such experiences teach students STEM skills including engineering, design, coding, computational, teamwork, communication, and many other skills to master the assigned task for the competitions. Educational Foundation Executive Director Julie Anderson Washburn shared, “We are extremely thankful for corporate investors like the Walmart Foundation. The 2023 VEX Robotics World Championship helped to provide exceptional experiences for our Lexington District One students to learn and grow. We’re also grateful for the endorsements of our local Walmart store managers, too, from the Lexington, West Columbia, Red Bank and Harbison stores. These store managers recognized the value and work-force skills learned while our students competed against the best teams in the world at this renowned VEX Robotics competition.”
Pictured: Educational Foundation Executive Director Julie Anderson Washburn; Lexington Technology Center VEX Robotics Team students; LTC STEM/Computer Science Instructor & VEX Robotics Coach Melissa E. Boehler; River Bluff High School VEX Robotics Team students; and LTC Computer Programming Instructor & VEX Robotics Coach Daniel Cummins