Philadelphia high school robotics team wins prestigious award at Houston championship

Central High School announced on Tuesday that their robotics team won the 2023 FIRST Impact Award at a Houston robotics Championship. 

The team, called RoboLancers, earned a permanent place in the FIRST Hall of Fame. The award recognizes the team's work to inspire the next generation of STEM leaders in Philadelphia public schools, making it the most prestigious award at the competition. 

"It's hard to explain the magnitude of this accomplishment to folks outside of FIRST. The scale and scope of the RoboLancers' impact has made such a positive difference for thousands of students over the last decade," said Daniel Miller-Uueda, STEAM curriculum specialist at the School District of Philadelphia and former coach of the RoboLancers. 


The RoboLancers were selected as the 2023 Championship FIRST Impact Award winner from a pool of 84 regional FIRST award winners. The team is now one of 34 teams from around the world to have achieved this honor in the competition that dates back to 1992. 

"When students float big ideas, I feel my job as a coach is to say ‘yes' and help them make it happen," said head coach of the RoboLancers, Michael Johnson. "We charge forward with these ideas and see how far we can take them."

Now, as a Hall of Fame team, the RoboLancers are prequalified to compete at the FIRST Championship for the next 10 years. 

With more opportunities in sight, the award-winning team's work will only continue to positively impact STEM programs for students all across the city and beyond.