Joe and Mary Grimes Lend a Hand to Roborodentia

Robotics has been a part of Cal Poly Computer Engineering (CPE) since the program’s early days, demonstrating how a complex blend of hardware and software studies produces invaluable lessons and amazing results. CPE’s annual Roborodentia competition — established in 1995 with the first competition in 1996 — has provided an arena in which the students can fine-tune their robotics skills and showcase their knowledge of computer engineering. The event is near and dear to Joe Grimes’ heart — and for good reason.

"Roborodentia has been a wellstructured activity for the past 21 years, exemplifying the essence of CPE and Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing tradition," said Grimes, a professor emeritus who served as an adviser to Roborodentia participants. "This wonderful learning experience helps students achieve CPE’s educational objectives and learning outcomes." Roborodentia involves students in every aspect of the event, from managing it and developing competition rules to raising funds for the awards. And then there is the building of competitive robots.

"Not everyone will successfully complete a robot for competition, and some will really struggle,” he noted. “But it’s the students encountering those difficulties who learn the most. That’s something you can’t duplicate in a classroom.”

For that reason, Grimes wants to ensure that Roborodentia is open to every student who wants to compete. Aware that expensive materials and electronic components have kept some from participating, he and his wife, Mary, have created the Professor Joe and Mary Grimes Family Endowment to help future participants with the costs.

Read the full article beginning on PAGE 10 in CPE's Fall 2016 Hello World pdf edition