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Clearwater Christian College professor, East Lake High robotics team earn honors

East Lake High School’s robot masters, FIRST Team Krunch, won the Chairman’s Award at the FIRST Robotics Competition Smoky Mountain Regional in Knoxville, Tenn.

Special to the Times

East Lake High School’s robot masters, FIRST Team Krunch, won the Chairman’s Award at the FIRST Robotics Competition Smoky Mountain Regional in Knoxville, Tenn.

Bob Jones University awarded the 2011 Alumnus of the Year award to Dr. Vickie Grooms Denny of Safety Harbor. The award, presented at the annual Bible Conference at the end of March, recognizes outstanding accomplishments, Christian leadership, devotion to faith, and loyalty to the principles of Bob Jones University.

Denny chairs the Department of Exercise and Sport Science, is a professor of physical education/teacher education and a women's volleyball coach at Clearwater Christian College.

As a volleyball coach, she has an overall record of 844 wins and 253 losses. She is a six-time NCCAA II National Coach of the Year and has coached her team to 11 NCCAA II National Championships.

In 2005, she was inducted into the NCCAA Hall of Fame.

In addition to her coaching accomplishments, Denny has published several articles and is a frequent presenter at Christian school conventions. She also serves as the administration board president of the National Christian College Athletic Association.

Along with her professional duties, Denny has conducted children's outreach ministries and volleyball clinics in Costa Rica, the Bahamas and the Dominican Republic. In 2010, she traveled to Haiti to assist in earthquake relief efforts.

Denny received a BS degree in Health and Physical Education from Bob Jones University in 1978, an MS in Physical Education/Psychomotor Development from The Ohio State University in 1989 and a Ph.D in Physical Education/Teacher Education from Florida State University in 1992.

• • •

East Lake High School's FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Team 79, also known as FIRST Team Krunch, won the Chairman's Award at the FIRST Robotics Competition Smoky Mountain Regional on Saturday in Knoxville, Tenn. The Chairman's Award is the most prestigious a team can win at a regional. It recognizes a the greatest commitment to spreading passion about science and technology into the community and school.

In the robotics competition, Team Krunch had a 6-4 record and was ranked 12th out of 47 teams at the end of the qualifying matches.

As final alliances of three robots each were picked, higher ranked teams combined to form alliances. This allowed Team Krunch to become the captain of the eighth seed alliance and affiliate with teams from Knoxville and Suwannee, Ga.

In the quarter finals, Team Krunch faced the first seed alliance, which defeated Krunch and its partners, and went on to win the regional.

The Chairman's Award recognizes that the purpose of FIRST is not to build the best robot, but honor the team that best embodies the purpose and goals of FIRST and provides a model for other teams.

The award submission involves writing a 10,000 character essay documenting the team's efforts at spreading the message of FIRST, as well as student interviews with judges at the competition.

Winning the Chairman's Award qualifies Team Krunch for a spot at the FIRST Championships in St. Louis April 27 through 30.

Team Krunch is part of East Lake High School's Academy of Engineering, a four-year program that offers students to study a curriculum developed by Project Lead the Way to make math and science relevant to students.

Both FIRST Team Krunch and the Engineering Academy are supported by Career Technical Education Foundation, Inc., a not-for-profit education foundation comprised of technology companies.

Clearwater Christian College professor, East Lake High robotics team earn honors 04/05/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 5, 2011 7:32pm]
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