By Starr D’Avril
April 20 saw more buses unloading children, more kid-filled cars trying to park and more LCCC staff and volunteers coming together for the biggest Lego Olympiad in its history. The 2012 Nordson/LCCC Lego Olympiad was held in the Spitzer Conference Center.
“This was the biggest one so far,” said Veteran Master of Ceremonies Mike Substelny of Engineering Technologies Division. “Next year we might go to a two-day event. 5th grade and under one day, 6th grade and up the next. It will be great!”
The Lego Olympiad is a gathering of local students given a chance to design and build competitive constructions out of personal Legos and/or ‘those supplied by their school or sponsoring group. Some students have competed year after year. The tenth grade team of Ethan Machock and Devin Lee, both from the Hudson area has been together for four years. This year they took 1st place in the Computer Controlled Division, by building a robot capable of traversing the 16-foot moonscape created by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers club (SME). “We have two 2nd place trophies and now we have two 1st place trophies. Now we have one of each at our homes,” said Machock.
The event is a combo of a fundraiser for SME and recruiting future engineering students. “We inspire kids to realize they can be engineers for a day just like in the real world. They are given a project. They have to plan it out and make it work,” said Substelny. “Hopefully we spark a true interest and they will come to LCCC for training.”
Rick Matos, president of SME said, “We promote ideas and creativity, sometimes parents are good, but the society is better as a community of like minds.”
The Littlest Lego Maniac Trophy went to 3-year-old twin girls for the first time. “The President missed the most important event on campus,” said Substelny.