Edwardsville Robotics Season Ends Prematurely

Katelyn Harris, Staff Writer

Robots, friendships and competition: this is what robotics looks like.

Edwardsville Technologies is a team that builds one robot each year and competes with it.

The team builds more than one robot to practice with, said co-president Emily Kloostra, who has been on the team for four years.

“Sometimes we build an identical one to practice with, but only one robot per team goes to competition. Then we compete on alliances of three robots each match.”

While the robot is the main focus of the team, the friendships made are what matters most to many members of the team.

”It actually turns into a family of people who are extremely dedicated and passionate about the success of the entire team.

“Many think the product we create is the robot at the end, but it is really the time we spend, the things we learn, and the friendships we create,” other co-president Garrett Valley said.

Valley said his favorite part is the start of the season.

“My favorite part by far would be the initial design stages,” Valley said.

Junior Matthew Reid, the electrical team lead (in charge of the wiring of the robot), emphasized his love for competing with the robot.

His favorite part of robotics is, “The competition at the end of the year in which you get to meet all of the other teams and see what they have been up to all season.”

The aspect of competing with the robot the team built is obviously very important. However, this year the competition was cancelled due to the coronavirus.

“[I’m] truthfully heartbroken; this team has put more work into this robot than any other. It is extremely difficult to have spent 25+ hours a week for eight weeks and to never actually compete or show the world what we made,” Valley said.

Despite being upset that the competition was cancelled, Valley is still being optimistic.

“However,“ Valley said, “the skills we learned and improved on as well as the friendships we built are still more than worth it.”