Robotics Education Centers Throughout the USA

Getting started with robotics can be difficult. Having a support group for guidance and support is extremely helpful. Many support groups have developed around the country to help schools and teachers get on their feet. Here are a few:

George Blanks runs the BEST competition for the whole southern region. You can contact him at

AREA, Alaska Robotics Education Association, manages FIRST LEGO League tournaments statewide, supports Alaska FIRST Robotics Competition teams and will hold its first Alaska Open this Spring. AREA also works in or with several Alaska school districts and the Alaska university system. Specific contact information for AREA can be found at, information on AREA managed, funded or supported events can be found at or you can send any initial queries to

Pima Community College and NASA’s Phoenix Program Office are putting together an organization to support robotics in this state. Please contact Doug Lombardi for information,

Northern California has the Western Regional Robotics Forum (WRRF). You can get in touch with them through Eric Reed, and Tom Murphy,, at Contra Costa Community College.

Los Angeles has the Southern California Regional Robotics Forum (SCRRF), You can get in touch with this organization through Chris Husmann, or Dr. Ken Berry,

San Diego has the San Diego Science Alliance, contact there is Pat Winter,, and Team San Diego FIRST Robotics Coalition, contact is Robert Mainieri,

Jason Marcks (

Three robotics groups are working in Colorado around Artificial Intelligence robotics. They can be contacted at their email lists,,

The University of Central Florida is developing a group with Devry University to have Robot Bootcamps, events and competitions. Contact Cynthia Andrews at

In the Miami area Nola Garcia,, Runs the Starbots Robotics Center and runs the BattleBot IQ Competition.

In the Tampa Bay area try First Step Robotics. J. Paul Wahnish,,
is the contact. You may have seen him on Extreme Makeover, Home Addition. He puts on summer robotic workshops and is supporting curriculum efforts in Florida.

There seem to be several developing groups on the islands. Art Kimura from Future Flight Hawaii knows most of them,

The 26 compuses of Ivy Tech Community College are supporting robotics teams through a new initiative that is supporting competitions, conferences and support meetings. Contact Indiana FIRST and the robotics network through Daniel Ward II,

The College of Education at Wichita State University (WSU) has a Mindstorms program for middle school students and a Roamer program for early childhood. ( WSU and Butler Community College have also started a robotics program that directly impacts high school students. Contacts are Karen Reynolds,; Tonya Witherspoon,; and Mel Whiteside,

Wichita State University (WSU) Engineering Department runs the Regional BEST Robotics competition as well. Contact Brenda Gile-Laflin,

Worchester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) supports several competitions and summer camp programs. Contact Col. Ken Stafford, stafford@WPI.EDU or Brad Miller,

Near Boston and Plymouth contact Mike Bastoni, and Mark Newby,

For LEGO, contact Lisbeth Ohse. She is our product specialist here at LEGO Education. Her contact info is

Tufts University, contact Chris Rogers, or Merredith Portsmore They run camps, teacher training, and competitions.

Washtenaw Community College (WCC) located in Ann Arbor, MI offers LEGO robotics camps to prepare students to compete in FIRST LEGO League and Robofest competitions. WCC also offers an industrial robotics program and students can earn college credit by taking our FIRST Robotics Competition course. Contact Maurice Tedder,, or, Gary Schultz,

Lawrence Technological University in Southfield host Robofest, and Robofest Academy,

Oakland County Competitive Robotics Association (OCCRA) is the only Intramural Robotics League in the US. OCCRA serves the Detroit Michigan area. Contact is Mike McIntyre,

The Precision Manufactures Organization is supporting robotics competitions and events throughout the state. You can contact them through Charles Arnold,, or Norm Domholt,

University of Navada a Reno has Eric Wang, He wrote a book on LEGO Robotics, Engineering with LEGO Bricks and ROBOLAB.

North Carolina:
Kevin Barnard is leading an effort to support educators

New Hampshire:
FIRST Place in Manchester offers classes, camps, and educator workshops.

FIRST Place 200 Bedford Street Manchester, NH 03101
603-666-3906 x427

FIRST LEGO League – and the FIRST
Robotics Competition –

Robo Tech Center in Nashua offers robotics courses and RoboFest competition. Contact them at 603-888-6102 or

In Cleveland Ohio at Cuyahoga Community College Jerry Seppelt,,
and George Bilokonsky, have been supporting local educators with competitions and workshops.

The KISS institute for Practical Robotics puts on the Botball competitions conferences and workshops. You can find information about them at

Oregon Robotics Tournament and Outreach Program can be found at

Robin Shoop directs the Robotics Academy at Carnegie Mellon University. The Robotics Academy offers onsite and online professional development opportunities for teachers as well as a comprehensive robotic curriculum. The Robotics Academy hosts robotic camps and competitions for students. More can be found at or email

Rhode Island:
Liana Ferreira Fenton is working with a consortium of Business and Education partners to support math, science, and technology in Rhode Island. She and her organization are connecting educational standards and state mandates for students with business and industries’ standards. Contact her at

Janice C. Kowalczyk ( Director, Rhode Island School of the Future does Robotics Park – which is really cool.

South Carolina:
Donn Griffith has worked for the FIRST organization to create a competition for the VEX robot. He is returning to teach at the University of South Carolina and develop a robotics educational organization there. You can reach him at

University of Houston, College of Technology’s Center for Technology Literacy (CTL).
Dr. Enrique Barbieri,
Taresa M. Mikle,
In partnership with NASA, CTL is responsible for coordinating Texas regional robotics competitions and other STEM-based activities.

If you are in Austin or Central Texas contact the University of Texas through

Richmond VA. Adria Hogan: Robotics instructor at Benedictine High School. FIRST team 1033.

West Virginia:
Marshall University supports several Remote sites to control LEGO Robots in SensorCity and Red Rover. Linda Hamilton is the brains behind this project,

Space Education Initiatives / Wisconsin Institute for Robotics in Education
puts on competitions for VEX Robotics and LEGO Robotics for the state. Eric
Brunsell is the contact,


Joe Swaty and Will Elliott at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock organize our Botball events in that region. Contact Will Elliott for more information:

Charles Winton,, organizes the local Botball events at the University of North Florida campus.

Contact Phil Olivier,, at Mercer University in Macon for information about the local Botball events.

Maryland and Virginia:
Contact for information about our Greater DC regional events.

David Mutchler at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology organizes the Midwest regional Botball events. You can contact him at:

Contact Holly Yanco ( at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell or Karl Wurst ( at Worcester State College for information about Botball events in the New England region.

Educators in the Northern California region can contact Terry Grant with NASA Ames at for information about Botball in that region. Teams in the San Diego area can contact Pat Winter at about Southern California regional Botball events. Other southern California area teams can contact for more information.

New York and New Jersey:
Contact the local organizers at Polytechnic University, Lamar McFarland at or Beverly Johnson at, for more information about Botball in this region.

Contact Illah Nourbakhsh at or Rich Simpson ( at the University of Pittsburgh for more information about Botball in the Pennsylvania region.