By Camille Hollier (‘20)
From March 21-23, seven students from the Louisiana School for Math, Science, and the Arts (LSMSA), along with college mentors from Northwestern State University (NSU), competed in the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition Bayou Regional in Kenner. LSMSA’s Robotics class joined NSU’s engineering students to create an official Robotics Team and competed in the prestigious FIRST Robotics Program. The group, designated Team 7562, worked for six weeks beginning in January to create a robot fitting the competition challenge: “Destination Deep Space.”
The robot, named Dante by the students, is able to load cargo such as dodgeballs into specified boxes. The robot can also reach up to 5 feet in height to attach panels to designated objects, earning the team points in the competition. Students in the class worked on a variety of team projects, including chassis (the base of the robot), controls, build and design, challenge and art and media, incorporating the skills of LSMSA’s diverse students.
The team placed 21 of 60 overall and tied for first place among the rookie teams. With a total of 132 cargo points, 46 hatch panel points, 99 habitat climb points, 102 sandstorm points and a record score of five wins and four losses, the team ended the competition with an overall ranking of 1.66, a high score among beginning teams.
LSMSA offers a wide variety of computer science courses, and has added an engineering course to the curriculum with plans of expansion. For more information on class offerings, visit www.LSMSA.edu/math.