December 6, 2019 (Lincoln) The Lincoln Police Department presented a check for $1,250.00 to The Malone Community Center of Lincoln Thursday. The money represented LPD’s winnings in an evidence analysis contest sponsored by a Law Enforcement Professional Organization.
The check, specifically, is for the Malone Center’s After School Robotics Club.
“We figured out that there’s another organization that’s using data, The Robotics Club, so we decided it would be a perfect fit” said Police Officer Luke Bonkewicz.
The Robotics Club meets at the Malone Center twice each week, facilitated by several University of Nebraska students.
“They use I-pads to move the machines they’re making” said Malone Center Director John Goodwin. “They have cars that they’re trying to make go forward and backwards, in circles, as well as move through an obstacle course.”
Goodwin said the club is a good experience for the children. “I like it because they’re not on their phones, they’re not playing video games, when they get frustrated we know why because they want their machine to work” he said. “A lot of math is going on with that, strategy, stimulating their minds.”
The club helps build social skills also. “They’re not doing it alone. They’re doing it as a team, so there’s a lot of teamwork going on” said Goodwin.
The club will also have a bearing on their futures, according to Goodwin. “I’m glad that they have this opportunity, because we wouldn’t know what they’re capable of if they didn’t get a chance.” Goodwin said working with robotics gives the kids a chance to realize that they have “gifts that they never tapped in to.”
The club gives them a different experience that they not used to having, said Goodwin, and “hopefully based on those experiences their thinking will change, their behavior will change, the outcome will be different, and from the outcomes, hopefully, will come their success.”
Background: LPD Is Finalist In Research Contest