Building underwater robots exposes students to an enjoyable and engaging learning experience. MATE ROV competitions provide a unique structure and experience for students to experience real world problem based learning in a team environment. To prepare for the competition, students assume a specific role on the team – CEO, CFO, engineering lead, marketing lead, etc. Throughout the process, students develop skills in project management, technical writing, communication, teamwork, entrepreneurship and leadership.
In addition, the competition requires students to apply skills in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills and can spark interest in practical application of these competencies.
A sophomore student notes, “I’ve never been good at math but after getting into MATE, I’m getting solid straight A’s in math. It’s now my favorite subject.” While engaging in MATE, this same student has decided to pursue a career in project management and problem solving and plans to become a naval engineer.
To date, the MATE Center and its regional partners have coordinated 16 international and 240 regional ROV competitions that have involved nearly 20,000 students in grades 4-16. The investment to start a MATE team is nominal and the return can be extraordinary.
Visit www.marinetech.org to learn more about how to get started with MATE and underwater robotics.