Thursday, March 1, 2012

Vex Robotics Tournament

Redmond High School hosted their Annual Vex Robotics tournament on February 25, 2012.  It was a resounding success.  This year teams from Canada to Oregon to California participated. Within the state teams from Bellingham to Bellevue made the trek to the must-enter tournament.  In past years, there would be typically 28 to 34 teams.  This year was one for the record books.  A total of 58 teams took part in one of the most competitive robotics tournaments in the country. There were ten teams from Redmond Junior High and Redmond High School alone.  Eight of the Exothermic Club’s teams made the knock-out stages. Two of our teams won awards for Build and Excellence as well. 

The volunteers, participants, mentors, judges, faculty, and staff were responsible for making this a great success. A special thanks to Mr. Rick Tyler the Club Advisor and Mrs. Melinda Tyler, unofficial team tournament project manager for their countless hours of effort. The club has its early origins in the sponsorship of Mr. Pete Saxby, the much beloved Physics teacher. Redmond High School is the home of the Exothermic Robotics club – perhaps the largest club after football! This year’s president of the club, Tara Balakrishnan, is a Redmond High Senior. She is the first female to be the head of the club. Over the last three years the club has seen a phenomenal increase in membership, particularly from young women.

A special thanks to principal Ms. Jane Todd for keeping the club alive by her efforts behind the scenes. The kids put in untold hours over the last many months and have inspired others with their passion for Science, Technology, Engineering and math. In addition, the club enhances the kids ability to work together, develop leadership and communication skills, and the spirit of fair play. Despite the rain and cold a large audience showed up to cheer on the competitors and they witnessed some truly exciting matches.  It is wonderful to have such a resource for STEM education in our neighborhood.

Photographs Courtesy of Mr. Jason Brett of BCIT:

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