ASU STEM Faculty Member Judges Montgomery BEST Robotics Competition
By ASU News Services
Dr. Sabita Saldanha, assistant professor of Biology at Alabama State University recently servedas a judge for the Montgomery BEST Robotics Competition. The competition was held October 18 -19 at the Multiplex at Cramton Bowl in Montgomery. The theme was “Off the Grid”.
BEST stands for (Boosting Engineering, Science and Technology). The competition is a pathway that connects students to STEM careers, offering them a hands-on program that incorporates coding, programming, math, engineering design, and creativity, and then gives students a tangible result of the STEM applications they are using.
The competition features more than 500 students, representing 24 middle and high schools across the state of Alabama. Students were challenged to design robots to help fix the grid after a storm or other catastrophic events and provide a safer approach.
Saldanha said as a STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) professional she is always excited to see how young minds work on addressing real world problems and develop solutions through creative thinking and teamwork.
“I have been a judge for the SOUTH BEST’s regional competitions for about four years now where the top best teams from the southern states participate,” she said. “When ASU came on board as the host of the Montgomery competition and I was informed of this opportunity, and knowing the talent that I have seen over the years, I was happy to judge these young individuals right here in Montgomery.
In addition to Saldanha’s work as a judge, Tambre Tolliver, a graduate student, volunteered her time to take pictures of the event.
“It was an exciting event with wonderful team exhibits and beautifully designed robots,” Saldanha said. “All in all it was a day well spent.”
BEST is a national program with 50 local competition sites in 18 states.
Dr. Derrick Dean and Dr. Cadavious Jones, members of ASU’s STEM faculty also attended the competition.
( Photos by Tambre Tolliver, Tamography)