Hatton-Northwood Robotics Team 876 won the Great Northern Regional and earned its way to the World Championships last March before the season was derailed by the pandemic. Now it has started its new season off with a totally different plan. A Covid Safety protocol was installed to protect all students and mentors as they work together this year. Students will compete virtually in many categories as live competition was cancelled. The team is designing a slightly different robot to pick up power cell balls, maneuver between obstacles and shoot at a target from four different distances. The robot will run autonomously (program controlled) and by tele-operation (by student control). They will also compete for several awards that will be judged virtually.
Thunder Robotics graduated 8 experienced seniors and is looking at the underclassmen to contribute and fill many spots on the team. Approximately 20 students from the Hatton/Northwood area are in the group and are mentored by local adults. Some of the mentors are: Corey Hagen, Ben Thorsgard, Ray Aamold, Drake Fisher, Jane Engen, LleAuni Redding, Mike Voglewede, Gerry Uglem, Justin Nelson, Scott Ness, Gary Gylten, Scott Mason, Candice Nelson and Bobbie Jo Uglem. They coach the students in many areas including: design and building, programming, strategy and scouting, award presentation, electronics and wiring, driving, new game design and community outreach. Although the students think mainly about the robot and winning the competitions, the robotics program prepares them for a future career in many STEM fields such as engineering, health, software programming, design and research.