AMES, Iowa – The Iowa 4-H Robotics Challenge will receive $25,000 from Bratney Companies, the Iowa 4-H Foundation has announced. This matching gift of $5,000 per year for five years will help Iowa youth develop their robot designing and programming skills, preparing them to become tomorrow’s engineers.
Bratney Companies, www.bratney.com, provides planning, design, construction and equipment solutions to seed, feed, grain, milling, food and bulk handling facilities around the world. Bratney Chief Operating Officer Paul Brown said, “We are making this gift to 4-H because this program is developing the future leaders for our industry. Through this contribution, our company can help 4-H make a difference in educating the workforce of tomorrow.”
On behalf of the Iowa 4-H Foundation, incoming President Barb Determan said, “We appreciate the Bratney Companies supporting 4-H in this manner. These types of gifts help Iowa State University Extension 4-H Youth Development provide opportunities for children throughout the state.”
Kids can get involved in robotics with ISU Extension 4-H Youth Development throughout the year. However, the next big robotics challenge takes place this Sunday, Aug. 15, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the 4-H Exhibits Building at the Iowa State Fair.
Teams will build their robots simultaneously in different areas of the 4-H Exhibits Building, explained Holly Bignall, with ISU Extension Science, Engineering and Technology (E-SET). Each of the six participating teams will receive two challenges. In one challenge they’ll use the LEGO Mindstorms© NXT platform to build a robot. In the second challenge they’ll have to build a robot using only the items in a “junk drawer.” At the end of the working period, the teams will enter the Challenge Field and set their robots loose to the cheers of spectators.
About the Iowa 4-H Youth Development Program
4-H is the nation’s largest youth development organization, serving more than 6 million young people across America with programs in leadership, citizenship, communication and life skills. One in five Iowa school-age youth participates in 4-H. In Iowa, 4-H Youth Development is headquartered at the Iowa State University campus in Ames. 4-H is supported by federal, state and county funding, private grants and donations, and fees. For more information about joining 4-H, contact your Iowa State University Extension county office at www.extension.iastate.edu/content/county-offices/ or visit www.extension.iastate.edu/4H.
Shelly Greving, Iowa 4-H Foundation. Through Aug. 23, Greving may be reached at the State Fair 4-H Exhibits Building Office, 515-262-3111, extension 380.
Laura Sternweis, Extension Communications and External Relations, 515-294-0775,