Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan

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Darren De Zeeuw’s robotics team headed to world championship

Posted: April 19, 2013

Darren De Zeeuw, AOSS associate research scientist, mentors the Dexter high school robotics team, the Dreadbots. The team qualified for world FIRST robotics championship this year.

The Dreadbots competed in two regional competitions and then at the Michigan State Championship, which was open to the top 64 teams out of 207 teams in the state. In the competition, the robots first shoots autonomously, followed by a two-minute round where the students controlled the robots and scored points by shooting discs into a rectangular opening. Then the robots attempted to climb a pyramid for extra points.

The team performed well, finishing ranked 16 in the state, and qualified for the world championships taking place in St. Louis on April 24-27.

This will be their first time at the world championships. This year was their second year at the state championships and their third year in existence. The team has grown from seven to 20 members.

De Zeeuw’s son, high school junior Michael De Zeeuw, told AnnArbor.com “We get more confident every year."

De Zeeuw, who has mentored the team for two years, says the experience taught him “how to engage kids and get them involved.” 

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