Wolverines robotics team going global

Robotics team earns wildcard spot to FTC World Championships

Cordova Senior High team, from left, at top, then bottom, Tristan Glasen, Dylan Maloney, Emory Vican, Micah Whitcomb, Rhett Traxinger, Ethan Beckett Photo courtesy of CHS Tech Club

By Jeremiah Beckett

For The Cordova Times

Just when we thought March madness and our Wolverine fever was coming to an end for the season we’ve got another reason to continue being a proud community.

Our high school robotics team has been selected to represent our school, town, and state at an exciting event; the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) World Championships.

Late last year, during our inaugural season of robotics, our team entered a lottery for a wild card seat to the world championships, where over 10,000 students meet. As luck would have it, we won one of the wild card seats and got invited to the first world championships. It is the highest level of robotics competition in the world for pre-collegiate students, offering an unmatched experience and platform to collaborate, learn, and compete with kids from around the globe.

The week of April 17, our CHS Robotics team will send six students to compete with 127 other teams from around the world at the George R Brown convention center in Houston, Texas, for four days of sunrise to sunset competitions.

Our team will participate in more matches at this event than we did all season, gaining significantly more hands on skills and knowledge, along with the opportunity to be ambassadors for our school and community.

Cordova CHS Robotics will join five other teams from Alaska, including two all girl teams, making for a strong Alaska presence at the FIRST Worlds Championship. Everyone on the team is very excited for this opportunity to compete and represent our community at this international event. What an awesome way for year one robotics to wrap up, with the Cordova High School Wolverines are going global.

FIRST recently released some great information parents might be interested in, including an external survey showing students participating in FIRST Robotics are 85 percent more interested in doing well in school, and over 95 percent show improved skills in problem solving, time management, conflict resolution, and communication skills.

In 2017 the FIRST program will also enable over $50 million in scholarships for students to pursue STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) education opportunities. You can find out more about the FIRST World Championships online at www.firstchampionship.org.

Jeremiah Beckett is the CHS Tech Club advisor