The FORCE must be with them


Michaela Dinman

The team gets ready for districts.

Michaela Dinman, Contributor

The Hollis-Brookline High School Robotics team, The Force Team 1073, departed for their second and final regional competition at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts after school on March 26, and returned March 28 with great success.

This competition was the final chance for Team 1073 to receive district points and gain entry into the New England District Championship. The 175 teams in New England would be ranked according to their total number of points, and the top sixty would be admitted to Districts. They attended the competition with 44 points already under their belt, ranking them 70th in comparison to the other teams at that time.

Team 1073 received some great news on March 29, the day after they returned home. The additional 31 points they earned was enough to move them to 36th place with a total of 75 points and to qualify them for Districts.

They are to leave for Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in Worcester, Massachusetts, where the District Competition is being held, from April 8-11. Over the next week, the team will be busy preparing for the competition, planning to make changes and minor fixes to their robot Nasus, strengthening their awards material, training the students that will drive during the matches, and packing anything and everything they might need.

The team hopes to do well.

“I have a strong feeling we can make it to [the World Championships],” Brian McCoy ‘16

, a member of the team, says, “But we were doing things that we were told we weren’t able to do. If we continue to push to do difficult things that we “aren’t able to do” then we will definitely be seen as a top-scoring team.”

The team will be pushed farther than ever before. The team’s head mentor, Sue Hay, says, “We will be competing with the top teams. It will be a little more difficult to stay in the upper half [of the rankings].”

The Mechanical subgroup will be pushed to their limits with the demand to build a stronger, bigger, better robot. Those who work on Software will spend long days and nights at their computers, poring over code and algorithms for hours at a time. Electrical has additional components that need to be added, resulting in a lot to do in little time. Business and Competition Strategy (BACS) will be presented with a group of people they need to quickly train on how to most effectively and strategically operate the robot during matches. Integration/ Systems Engineering will have plenty to keep them busy as well, with further testing, inspecting and scheduling that needs to be completed in order to make things go as smoothly as possible in the next hectic week.

Team 1073, competing with the best in New England, will definitely be in their element, though they will be presented with challenges along the way. May the FORCE be with them.