Kingman's robotics club gets kudos at regionals
KINGMAN - The Team 60 Robotics Club will be heading to the FIRST Robotics Championships later this month after impressing regional judges at two recent competitions with its robot and community service.
Team 60 will travel to St. Louis, Mo., for the championship competition April 23-26.
Team 60 is composed of about 25 students from Kingman, Lee Williams and Kingman Academy of Learning high schools, as well as home-schooled students.
"These kids have surpassed every expectation we've had for them," said Jody Shanaman, the sponsor for Team 60 students at LWHS. "I am so proud of them, not only for winning but for their demeanor and their representation of the community.
"They have shown their hard work and creativity, and they've also given back to the community. I'm ecstatic for them."
Other Team 60 officials are Kerry Shanaman, KHS robotics sponsor and continuing education teacher, and Celeste Lucier, KAHS sponsor and a science teacher at Kingman Academy Middle School.
The team, which has been active since 1996, recently spent six weeks building a six-and-a-half-foot-tall robot for the regional robotics competitions.
That included designing, welding, machining, powder-coating and programming the robot for the events, which began in Chandler and moved to Las Vegas.
The team came in second at both regionals. At the Arizona FIRST Robotics East Regional in Chandler, Kingman and its alliance of robots from San Diego and Gilbert, Ariz., placed second overall. The robots work in alliance with two additional robots, which are randomly selected at the beginning of the competition.
This year's Team 60 robot is vertical and functioned as an elevator for "Recycle Rush," a recycling-themed game played by two alliances of three robots each. Robots score points by stacking totes on scoring platforms, capping those stacks with recycling containers, and properly disposing of foam pool noodles that represent litter.
During the Chandler competition, George Williams, an 18-year industrial mentor with Team 60 and FIRST, was selected for the Woodie Flowers Award. Williams works for Laron Inc. and has his own business, DAM21Machining. The award distinguishes a mentor that embodies the concepts and ideals of FIRST Robotics and guides students into STEM careers.
Team 60 was recognized for its robot design and won Delphi's Excellence in Engineering Award, and Rebecca Leggett, a sophomore at KAOL High School, was selected for the FIRST Robotics Dean's List. She was one of two students who will advance to the championships for a chance to win at that level and receive a scholarship.
Team 60's robot alliance of two robots from California also grabbed second place in Las Vegas at the FIRST Robotics competition.
Teams at the event included robots from China, Germany, Florida, Utah, Pennsylvania, California, Nevada and Arizona.
In Las Vegas, the team was recognized with the Regional Engineering Inspiration Award for its community service, from personal projects to group work with the Paige Suchowierski Memorial Foundation in Kingman.
The students gather to modify electric children's cars for disabled youth.