Dear Colleagues and Robo Vikes,
I am honored to serve as the Robo Vikes Head Coach this year and would like to thank Mr. Benny Araujo for accepting my offer to act as our Assistant Coach. Dr. Scheer stepped down from the Head Coach position in order to spend more time with his family. We will continue to pray for Dr. Scheer and his family, and we are extremely thankful for all that he has done to create the wonderful Robo Vike Robotics Program here at Nolan Catholic.
I believe that with the great group of mentors, parents and students, we will continue to strive toward his vision.
After our successful 2017 Season where we won the Dallas Regional and the Engineering Excellence Award in San Antonio, were Runner-Up in the San Antonio Regional, and competed in Houston at the World Championships, the Robo Vikes had a busy summer. First, the team put on the three-day Robo Vike Summer Camp in early June. During this week, junior high students were challenged to learn how to build and program Lego Mindstorm Robots and successfully compete in a challenge. Nolan Robo Vike students gained leadership experience as they mentored these younger students. Each afternoon, welding specialist Larry Baker spent a few hours teaching the students how to weld both aluminum and steel. Virgil Sellers taught the students basics in using the milling machine.
Our students worked hard to prepare for a trip in early July to Indianapolis, Indiana to compete in the Indiana Robotics Invitational (IRI). Dr. Scheer, myself and a team of 14 students made the trip to Indianapolis to compete with the best of the best in the United States. This competition is like the All-Star game of the FIRST Robotics Competition. One of the teams that had competed in the Finals of the San Antonio Regional ended up ranked last. Our team was not selected for the elimination rounds, but we enjoyed watching some of the cream-of-the-crop teams compete in the championship. The highest scoring round of the season (without penalties) was scored during these matches – over 500 points. It was a fantastic experience for our team and a great way to say a final goodbye to our graduated seniors who attended the event with us.
This is the first time we have had so many off-season events, and we are excited to start our new season by keeping up the momentum from last year. Our Kick Off Meeting on September 13 was very successful; We had a great turn out and could feel the excitment. The mentors have five projects lined up that will be used to help train students in the design, fabrication, assembly and testing processes needed to build confidence so that the team will be ready for build season. The team will be building two drive trains, a ball shooter and hopper, an extending arm/grabber and one other project that is yet to be determined. Mentor Mike Crance will be directing the project efforts and Kevin LaPerriere will head training in fabrication. Chris Eggleston, Mark Stranczek, Mike Ross, David Bickett, and Bob Benkowski will also be helping the team as mentors. We greatly appreciate them sharing their time and talents!