Sanford Middle School prepares to send 2 teams to world robotics competition

Updated: Mar. 19, 2017 at 4:27 PM CDT
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(Source: WSFA 12 News)
(Source: WSFA 12 News)

LEE COUNTY, AL (WSFA) - A number of robotics teams are gearing up to represent Alabama during the world competition in Kentucky next month.

One of the youngest teams representing the state is from Sanford Middle School. After placing at the state competition, two teams from SMS in Lee County qualified for the VEX IQ World Robotics Competition.

What sets this group apart is up until this school year these students had never been exposed to robotics. This is the first year the school has had a competitive robotics program. While they will be the new kids on the block, they are thrilled about this challenge.

On April 23 they will be competing in the elementary school division against close to 300 other teams. The two teams of 4 will be tasked with designing and programming a robot to operate manually and automatically.

Learning these types of skills will not only benefit them now but also in the future.

"This is huge. We are a rookie team. These kids have never done this. One of the reasons we do this, and one of the reasons I work with children to do robotics is because it does help them decide whether to go into a S.T.E.M career in the future. It can definitely help them get a college scholarship," said Robert Harlan, Sanford Middle School Robotics Coach.

While only 8 students will be competing they are fundraising to be able to take the entire 17 member team on this trip. If you are interested in donating click here.

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