During the Fall 2014 Foundation Grant Cycle, the 5155 Bearcats Robotics Team from Ubly High School had just finished their first season receiving multiple novice awards. In order to continue to build the program, additional funding was needed. After hearing a presentation from Ashley Osentoski, a founding team member, on the benefits of robotics and STEM programs for high school students, the Foundation knew this program targeted a Strategic Priority area of the Foundation, creating career pathways for Huron County students and decided to get involved.
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics is a unique competition that allows high school students to work on tight deadlines using Computer Aided Design (CAD) to build a robot that can compete against other robots in a game chosen by FIRST. The 5155 Bearcats have competed at the State Championships in their first two seasons and continue to improve their scores. Their team also was a featured display at the Foundation's 2014 Annual Celebration where they provided demonstrations with the robot and explained the process to Foundation guests.
We asked a few team members "Why do you like robotics?" These were their responses:
“I like robotics because it has team problem solving. I've learned to be a better leader and to be more creative.”-Shannon Particka
“What I like about robotics is that it’s a place where I can be myself, meet new people, and learn lots. From being in robotics I have learned about technology and I've also learned new communication skills.” -Megan Leppek
“I like robotics because I like engineering and problem solving. I learned a lot about building and driving the robot.” -Blake Schumacher
“Robotics is a great opportunity for teens to challenge themselves. They gain problem solving skills along with communication skills. The team has been a great addition to Ubly Schools.” - Ashley Osentoski