The Robert C. Byrd Institute for Advanced Flexible Manufacturing (RCBI) promises a summer of discovery for 9- to 14-year-old students interested in robotics.

Activities kick off June 27-30 at RCBI’s Huntington location with a camp for those interested in FIRST LEGO League (FLL) robotics but who are not members of a team. During the four-day event, campers will learn to build, program and operate LEGO Mindstorms EV3 robots.

The cost is $100 for each camper and includes lunch daily. Robotics experience is not necessary. To register, visit

RCBI also will host a free, two-day Boot Camp July 20-21 focused on boosting participation and promoting STEM education in the southern counties of Mason, McDowell, Mingo, Wayne and Wyoming. Groups from these counties who are interested in forming teams are encouraged to apply for the free camp, which will also take place at RCBI’s Huntington location.

Five teams will receive a free Mindstorms EV3 robot after completing training and agreeing to compete in FLL. Teams must include two adult coaches and between 2 and 10 students age 9 to 14.

Both camps will be taught by employees from NASA’s IV&V Educator Resource Center and NASA WV Space Grant Consortium using curriculum specifically developed for 9- to 14-year-olds. Students will learn to program robots for specific missions and work on core values and team-working skills that align with the FIRST LEGO League robotics vision. Additionally, campers will engage with guest speakers who have knowledge of real-world robotics and see demonstrations from advanced high school level robotic competitors.

RCBI’s robotics initiative is funded in part by the West Virginia Space Grant Consortium. Support for this and similar camps across the state is provided by the West Virginia Robotics Alliance, STEM Enterprises, Fairmont State University, MARS FRC team 2614 and the Southern West Virginia Robotics Club.

RCBI’s Huntington location is at 1050 4th Ave. For more information, contact RCBI’s Mike Friel at 304-781-1686 or