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Pitogo High School, one of the eight new schools in the 3rd Tagisang Robotics: Design, Build and Play Competition, surprised all the 39 schools—veterans and rookies, alike—as they ruled the elimination round with a perfect 6-0 slate, making them not only the Best Rookie Team but also the Best Team. As the Best Rookie Team, they won P50,000 cash prize, P10,000 for their coach, medals for all students and a trophy for their school. They also secured another P100,000 cash prize, P30,000 for their coach, along with a trophy and medals for being the Best Team. 

Likewise, the alliance of Benigno Aquino High School—last year’s Best Team Awardee—, Ramon Magsaysay Cubao High School, and Rizal National Science High School won the Final Round with a perfect 2-0 record to be named as the Best Alliance and bring home P150, 000 cash prize, P30,000 for their coaches, medals for students and trophies for their schools. 

For the Special Awards, Grace Christian College won the Best Engineering Design Award given by the National Instruments Philippines; La Salle Greenhills won both the Most Popular Robot Award and Most Popular Team Award given by Felta Multimedia, Inc. and Alexan Commercial, respectively; and Pasig City Science High School grabbed the Best Blog Award courtesy of Think Lab. 

The Tagisang Robotics: Design, Build and Play Competition, organized by the Science Education Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-SEI) together with the Nido Fortified Science Discovery Center (NFSDC), is an annual varsity type robotics competition that seeks to promote robotics to the youth and eventually entice them to pursue studies and careers in science and engineering. It begins with a Game Kick-off where common Kits-of-Parts are given to all participating public schools free of charge, and at a cost to all participating private schools. The school teams build their robots for a period of three (3) months, with technical trainings provided until they are ready for the varsity games. 

The game is a mixture of Filipino-loved sports, basketball and football, using robots where alliances—composed of three teams—try to score buko, milon and pakwan balls to their opponent’s goal with the help of human shooters, drivers and commanders in an alliance composed of three (3) school teams. 

SEI Officer-in-Charge praised the competing teams for putting on not just a good show but for increasing the level of competitiveness and determination to be the best in the bunch. 

“I am very delighted that we have this venue for our kids to really unleash their potential in engineering, particularly robotics, at this era when advancements in engineering and in information and communications technology indirectly dictates how far other fields such as health and medicine, physics, chemistry, agriculture, and others move forward,” she said. 

Fontanilla said the competition is a good step for students to venture into robotics especially now that robotics and engineering can be used in monitoring and assessing potential impacts of disasters and help people prepare better. 

“We need experts to guide the millions of Filipinos on how to make sense of loads of knowledge and make use of technologies for our own advantage,”she added. “You are certainly fit to be those experts in the future as you have proved to be systematic, innovative and enthusiastic, not to mention scientifically-inclined, as young students." (30)