Having witnessed elementary and high schools students showcase their “genius play” in the recently held 13th Philippine Robotics Olympiad (PRO), Science Education Institute Director Dr. Josette Biyo expressed optimism in the future of robotics in the country. 

Watching in the sideline of a miniature soccer court where robots made by high school robot enthusiasts aimed for goals while elementary wizards demonstrate some of their innovative robot creations in their respective booths, Biyo said she was amazed by how far the robotics program in many schools in the country has developed. 

“In the Philippines, there is a lot of interest and potential for robotics. We can mention the winnings we had in both the local and international robotics competitions as proofs. We can also highlight the increased participation of schools in various robotics contests as another sign that the field is indeed on the rise,” said Biyo. 

“We can foresee through this PRO that the future of Philippine robotics is really bright,” she added. 

The 13th PRO, which was held last 10-12 September 2014 in Quezon City as organized by Felta Multimedia, Inc. and in partnership with SEI and other institutions, is a science and engineering educational event that aims to develop the intellectual and critical thinking skills of elementary and high school students through robotics. 

“It helps us unlock the potential of our kids in science, technology and engineering as we try to produce more robotics experts for the future,” said Mylene Abiva, national organizer of the PRO and President of Felta Multimedia, Inc.. 

Abiva said the PRO prepares Filipino students to compete with the best of the world in the World Robot Olympiad (WRO) which will be held in Russia this November. 

This year, more than 40 public and private elementary and high schools showcased their creations in the competition. The following school-teams emerged as winners in the various categories: 

A. Regular Category 

1st – West Rembo Elementay School (Team B) 
2nd – Bagong Pag-asa Elementary School (Team A) 
3rd – Naga Central Elementary School 

High School 
1st – Living Stone International School (Team A) 
2nd – Pitogo High School (Team A) 
3rd – Diliman Preparatory School Commonwealth 

B. Robot Soccer 
1st – PSHS Bicol (Team A) 
2nd – Benigno High School
3rd – Science and Technology Education Center 

C. Open Category 

1st – Dr. Yanga’s Colleges Inc. 
2nd – Grace Christian College 
3rd – First Robotics Learning Center 

High School 
1st – Dr. Yanga’s Colleges Inc. 
2nd – Grace Christian College 
3rd – PSHS Eastern Visayas Campus 

Department of Science and Technology Undersecretary Fortunato dela Peña said he believes that the contestants’ skills in science and engineering are already advanced and therefore these set them up to a bright future in the field of robotics. 

“The field of robotics is not only fun and challenging, it is also in-demand in the professional world. So should you choose to excel in robotics for the rest of your young journey then you are in store for great things,” said dela Peña. 

Some of the winners will represent the country in the WRO on November 19 to 25 to be held in Sochi, Russia. Around 40 countries are expected to compete. 

“We hope that we will bring home more honors this year and so we ask for the support and prayers of the Filipino nation,” disclosed Abiva. (30)