Three robotics teams from the Comox Valley and one from Shawnigan Lake will be headed to Dallas, Texas later this month to participate in the VEX Robotics World Championships.
VEX robots are a popular learning tool in schools around the world. They are fast and fun and those who put them together love the challenge of making them work.
“It’s an engineering process so you design, try, fix, get it working, do it again, repeat, repeat, repeat,” said Morgan Pinel, a Grade 10 student at Isfeld Secondary School in Courtenay.
“It’s cool to see things drive and do tasks and it’s a nice feeling when it performs really well,” added Franklin Warren, a Grade 9 student at Highland Secondary School in Comox.
“It’s kind of satisfying when you spend so much time on a robot and then see it work,” said Timothy Sterk, a Grade 9 Highland student.
The Comox Valley School teams were showing off their robots and skills at Driftwood Mall in Courtenay Thursday as they spread the word about the program and raised money for their trip from April 25 to 29.
They will join over 800 teams from around the world in Texas.
“We’ve been working all year to hopefully get to this point and we’re very excited,” said Reese Schroeder, who is in grade 11 at Highland.
The challenge for teams this year is to build a machine that scoops up discs, then shoots them into a net, while battling against another team doing the same thing on the same court.
“You have to design your robot to be fairly robust. It’s not BattleBots level but there’s a fair amount of contact,” stated Nicholas Horal, a grade 11 student at Vanier Secondary School in Courtenay.
The four Vancouver Island teams will face other students from around the world.
“There are going to be some very tough competitors. I’m looking forward to trying my luck,” said Zander Hole, a grade 11 student at Nides Navigate in Courtenay.
The Comox Valley teams are now fundraising to cover some of the cost of travelling to and staying in Dallas.
The team has secured some sponsorships and has held bottle drives but would happily accept any financial assistance if anyone is willing to pitch in.
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