“The Robot Guy”

Position: Head Instructor

Michael Vawter was lead programmer, builder, tester, and handler for the MindStorm Troopers FIRST LEGO League (FLL) team. They competed for four years, becoming the first team to win 1st place Robot Performance at the FLL World Festival two years in a row. Michael co-founded the Robot Academy and has taught thousands of students how to master LEGO robotics. He’s been featured in Popular Science Magazine, was on TV with Bill Nye the Science Guy, and was inducted into the National Gallery for Young Inventors. He published peer-reviewed psychophysics research at Denison University in 2011 and went on to earn a master’s degree in entrepreneurship and innovation.

Michael has continued to contribute to the FLL community by serving as a judge and referee at the state and world level. He has also coached and mentored teams of his own (some of whom have won international titles of their own).

In his ongoing career as a robotics teacher, Michael helps students and teachers to analyze and solve technological problems more creatively by integrating their right-brain and left-brain capacities.