A different kind of playing field

A different kind of playing field

ESCANABA — It’s all about the battle of the brains and the bots. For the third year in a row, Escanaba High School is hosting a FIRST Robotics Competition.

Teams from across the state traveled to Delta County to take part in the two–day competition. Students spent the last two months building a robot to accomplish a unique task.

Teams partner with teams from other schools in hopes of winning the battle on the gridiron. The students enjoy the competition as well as the camaraderie of the event.

“When we first get here and start setting up everyone is just a big flood of excitement. But when you get out here on the field, it just explodes,” said Corina Porres of Negaunee High School.

“It gives us the experience of interacting with other schools and seeing how big they are. Some schools come here and they have 50 kids on their team, where as us we have 50 kids in our high school,” said Millie Reed of Raider Robotics.

Robotics has become a big sport not just for the students, but also for the schools and communities involved with the competitions.

“It’s motivating. It puts the emphasis on problem solving, cooperation and teamwork. I feel that’s a real positive thing for our school systems as well as our community,” said Escanaba Superintendent Michelle Lemire.

“What it comes down to is having support to create a team and having coaches and mentors and often time that comes from partners in the private sector and people who are willing to put the time in to help coach kids,” said Dave Nyberg of Gov. Rick Snyder’s Office.