Michigan Freshman is FIRST Scholar

Contact: WPI Media Relations, 508-831-5616

Irving F. Liimatta of Pontiac, Mich., is the recipient of the U.S. FIRST/WPI Design Innovation Scholarship. The four-year, $68,000 award, established this year by WPI, will be granted each year to a member of the team that creates the best robot design as voted by participants of the annual U.S. FIRST Competition. U.S. FIRST founder Dean Kamen 73 and President Edward A. Parrish were on hand when Liimatta visited WPI in July.

Liimatta, who is majoring in electrical and computer engineering at WPI, was a member of the 1996 Pontiac Central High School/Delphi Interior team that built a "robo-gladiator" from a standard kit of parts provided by U.S. FIRST. Liimatta helped guide the robot against 73 other teams that participated in the championship, which was held in April at Walt Disney World's Epcot in Orlando, Fla.