New K-12 Robotics Center is Open for Business

featured image showing Nevada Lt. Governor Kate Marshall and University of Nevada, Reno President Brian Sandoval visit with members of FYRE Robotics, a FIRST Robotics Competition team, at the K-12 Robotics Center opening event.

New K-12 Robotics Center is Open for Business

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Here is another reason to move to Reno! The much anticipated new K-12 Robotics Center is now open for business. The vision to create a unique space that encourages young people’s interest in robotics, computer science, engineering, and automation – is now a reality and it’s an investment in our future.

The K-12 Robotics Center | University of Nevada, Reno, supported by Tesla and the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada (EDAWN), celebrated its opening in downtown Reno on August 6th. The unique University facility for robotics-based education and competition teams will strengthen the path to degrees and careers, many available in our community. See the Press Release

An Investment In Our Future

Mike Kazmierski, EDAWN president and CEO, sees the K-12 Robotics Center helping to answer a big question:

“Where are we going to be as a region in 10 years? If we are going to be a tech hub, we need to reinvent how we think about and teach technology.”

Mike Kazmierski, EDAWN president and CEO

EDAWN has added the role of regional robotics coordinator, held by Caroline Hanson, to its team to support programming and connect the region’s robotics-related efforts, educators and organizations.

“We need our students – at all levels of our educational systems and from all backgrounds – to see and understand the opportunities ahead,” said University President Brian Sandoval.

How K-12 Students Can Benefit from Robotics

Research has found that exposure to robotics drives interests in STEM and influences education and career choices.

Studies also show that exposure to robotics has a lasting impact on girls and women regarding educational and career choices, even more so than their male peers.

Robotics engage students on a new level. Access to technology provides students with a unique opportunity to explore different types of learning. For more information on these benefits and how you can support them, contact Caroline Hanson, Regional Robotics Coordinator.

Facility Features

The new K-12 robotics facility has special features geared specifically for robotics education. They include:

  • A large open space for k-12 students to design, build and test their creations
  • A space specifically designed for competitions
  • Specialized tools and equipment

“This is a place where kids and parents, coaches, teachers and University faculty all come together. The kids will learn to design and build, and they’ll see the opportunities and the support for their future success.”

Mridul Gautam, University of Nevada, Reno Vice President of Research and Innovation.

About the Robotics Academy of Nevada

The Robotics Academy of Nevada – a new statewide professional development program funded by Tesla’s K-12 Education Investment Fund – is being developed by the Desert Research Institute, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and the University of Nevada, Reno. Facilitated by DRI’s Pre-K-12 STEM education and outreach program, Science Alive, the new academy will launch this summer in partnership with the Colleges of Engineering at Nevada’s research universities in Reno and Las Vegas.

The funding of the Robotics Academy of Nevada is part of Tesla’s $37.5 million investment in K-12 education in Nevada aimed at programs that encourage students of all backgrounds to consider a career in STEM or sustainability. Tesla began rolling out the education investment in 2018 and will carry it out over five years. (source)

See how Robotics Competitions and the New Robotics Center will Positively Impact Our Region’s Workforce Development Initiative: K-12 Robotics Center | University of Nevada, Reno

Get Involved

Companies have also reached out to EDAWN looking for ways to engage in ways that will have an impact on local K-12 education. Nevada Robotics provides a way to do that. For example, Tesla currently matches donations for secondary robotics programs while Nevada Gold Mines supports professional development initiatives.

EDAWN is supporting Nevada Robotics in seeking partners within our community to serve as mentors, volunteers, career advocates, and STEM connections between schools and our employers.

Ready to get involved? 

We ask for your support in 4 simple steps.

  1. Watch this 2min video: This isn’t a Robot
  2. Complete and share this survey
  3. Consider coaching or mentoring a Robotics team
  4. Share the Design Squad Global site with parents and educators.


“Robotics Center for K-12 Students.” KTVN Channel 2 – Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video, Jan. 2021,

“New Robotics Academy of Nevada to Offer K-12 Teacher Trainings.” University of Nevada, Reno,

2 thoughts on “New K-12 Robotics Center is Open for Business”

  1. Patty Christensen

    My private school is looking to donate 12 MBots by MakeBlock. Where can I find a school in need and will use them.

    1. Hi Patty,

      Thank you so much for commenting and making such a wonderful offer. I will get in touch with you via email to set up the donation. Take care! Lindsey

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