Gary Held, a senior engineer at DENSO Battle Creek’s (DMMI) Quality Control Laboratory, has supported FIRST Robotics, an international competition that gives students real-world engineering experience, for more than four years. In this role, he mentors student teams in robot design, and helps them develop skills needed to turn ideas into tangible technology ready for competition.
What Gary finds most rewarding is that students who participate are there voluntarily. They want to learn, and unlike high school sports, FIRST Robotics allows students to compete at national and international levels.
“FIRST Robotics gives students the opportunity to be on a team that uses skills that are not physical in nature,” said Gary. “They can still have the same recognition as the athletics teams, but on a playing field on which they can prosper now and gain skills that they can carry with them to succeed in the future.”
In the program, students grow their skills in areas that are standards in engineering. These include design, computer-aided design, mechanical principles, manufacturing techniques, tooling, troubleshooting, programming, working as a team and more.
DENSO is proud to sponsor FIRST Robotics and even more so of our associates who participate in its worthwhile programming. These young learners will be the lifeblood of our industry, and we look forward to continuing to enhance STEM education for students.