In addition to these activities, however, teams at the regional are also judged on how well they work together and collaborate with other teams, said Steven Odle, the MVTHS robot team sponsor.
“It is a competition, but will you help, out of your good will, all the other teams that are competing against you?” Odle said. “It’s really a big thing, teaching kids teamwork.”
The RoboRams team currently has about 15 active members.
MVTHS junior Rachel Bolerjack, the team treasurer, said she especially enjoys using her Computer Aided Design skills to help build the robot. This activity fits in well with her Project Lead The Way courses at the high school.
“It’s kind of nice to be able to learn new things and build some interesting stuff to achieve goals a certain way,” Bolerjack said. “I like machining the parts a lot. It’s pretty interesting.”
MVTHS junior Alex Nguyen Tran is the team’s safety officer. He does a lot of machining work for the Robotics Club, making parts for the robot.
“I’ve been into machining … so if they need a part I just go in the shop (and) make that part up with the dimensions they hand me,” Nguyen Tran said. “I’ve just been into robots for a long time, so it’s just kind of fun.”
Odle said it’s the hands-on aspect of the work that makes it so beneficial for the students.
“It’s going to be hands on, so much hands on,” Odle said. “We’re going to have to work through these, we’re going to have to design these, we’re going to have to build these. … We’ve got all these hands-on, problem solving (activities).”