Tech kids compete for glory at robotics competition

23rd Annual Best Robotics competition

On Sunday, middle and high school students from across Texas converged in the Alamo City, bringing along robots built to compete against one another in competition.

It's the 23rd Annual San Antonio Booting Engineering Science and Technology High School Robotics Competition.

"Last year we actually won state for the same competition," said Carlos and Jalon, students at United High School in Laredo, which is one of three schools from the city to compete.

Each student has their own reason for getting into robotics.

"I've been leaning towards mechanical engineering because of this, and it's really helped me look at the different aspects," Jalon said.

"It really helped me open my eyes to what I want to do," Carlos explained. "It's just preparing me for my future career."

"I'm extremely proud of my students," said Carlos Ruiz, a coach and engineering and robotics teacher at Lyndon B. Johnson High School in Laredo. "They have gone above and beyond expectations."

Each team competes in eight matches. In between each match, they have a chance to improve their robot.

First place comes with a pretty nice prize.

"There is a $50,000 scholarship and a $60,000 scholarship to St. Mary's University that can be awarded to a senior on the team who wants to attend St. Mary's," head volunteer Terry Grimley said.

The teams have three minutes to harvest corn, plant seeds, and collect lettuce and tomatoes. Once the clock runs out, the points are added up. At the end of the day, a winner is crowned. But it's not just about the scholarships.

"They are working with their hands to build the robots. They are problem-solving. They are working on a team," Grimley said. "It's really quite a bit of development for the kids that participate in the program."

(© 2016 KENS)


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