Robotics Team Wins Regional Competition
Writer / Keeley Miller
On October 24, the Hamilton Southeastern High School PLTW Engineering class won two first place trophies in the regional BEST Robotics competition at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. Each year, the annual competition presents high school teams with a challenge and a six week deadline. After hours of work after school and on weekends, the HSE team won first place in both the robotics competition and the BEST (Boosting Engineering Science and Technology) competition.
“Representing your school and hometown and doing amazing things at a competition like this is an amazing feeling,” Sam Javed, project manager, said. “The entire team was jumping around playing vuvuzelas and singing HSE’s fight song after our win. It truly felt like a team effort had finally paid off.”
The robotics competition required students to fully create a robot from scratch, including designing, building and programming. The robot had to perform specific tasks in a set time limit to earn points. This year, the challenge was “Pay Dirt”, and teams had to create robots that could pick up and bring back different objects that could be ‘mined’. The BEST competition went along with the robotics competition and required the team to submit an Engineering Notebook with all of the work that went in as well as a presentation.
“As far as how much work we put in, two periods were working for about six weeks on this. We all came in at 7:30 to work on PSAT day. A group of us also put in additional 50 hours or so each, working on Saturdays, after school and every day of Fall Break,” Mason Swofford, project manager, said. “So, we’ve put in a lot of time and energy into this project.”
Beyond the first place trophies, HSE also won plaques for the best engineering design process, best spirit and sportsmanship and most robust machine.
Looking into the rest of the year, the HSE team plans on competing in the national competition December 5 in North Dakota. The team will be improving their award-winning robot, named FlexDog, even more.