Robots for everyone
Unified Robotics is an inclusive program bringing STEM skills to students with disabilities through competitive robotics. Students and schools are invited to attend the 2018 Special Olympics Washington championships at the Pacific Science Center in Seattle on Nov 18th.
- Delaney FosterI believe diversity includes disability. We always focus on their disabilities instead of their abilities. And that is something that Unified Robotics is changing.
It all started in 2015 when Delaney Foster wanted to create a high school robotics club that could include her sister Kendall, who has autism. Using the concept from Special Olympics Unified Sports, which brings together people with and without intellectual disabilities to compete as a team, Delaney developed a plan. She created Unified Robotics, where teams of students (“partners” from the general education population alongside “athletes” from special education) use LEGO MINDSTORMS kits to build robots that compete in BattleBots-style sumo matches.
Today, Unified Robotics is a game-changer for students with special needs at more than 50 schools. Three years in, the organization is providing life-changing access to STEM education, technology, and digital skills for everyone—regardless of their abilities. Microsoft has partnered with Unified Robotics to champion this mission by providing technology, devices, and volunteer support. Students and schools around the U.S. are invited to get involved, register their team, and begin their build.
Getting involved with Unified Robotics is easy, whether it’s starting a team, volunteering time and talent, or joining as an athlete or mentor.
You can also support Unified Robotics teams by attending the 2018 Special Olympics Washington championships taking place at the Pacific Science Center in Seattle on Nov 18th.
Interested in starting a new program? First, find out if there are Special Olympics Unified Sports at your school. If so, connect your athletic director to teacher who’ll be leading the robotics program and begin working together to start a team. Then, connect with your region’s Special Olympics director. If there aren’t already Unified Sports at your school, you can also contact the regional Special Olympics director about getting your district on board.
How the competition works
The students behind the bots
Learn how one high school student started a movement for inclusion in competitive “My robotics team was my whole entire life in high school” - Delaney Foster