Dawson’s Robotics team was the overall champion and won or placed in almost all categories at the CRC Robotics competition in mid-February. They brought home two trophies and 11 plaques.
“Our team demonstrated an incredible spirit of togetherness, creativity, ingenuity and perseverance,” said Joel Trudeau, faculty mentor to the team of 30 Dawson students. “Their joy and team spirit was inspirational!”
Introducing students to the fun of robotics
Team co-captains James DiSciullo and Jason Kirsch, both second-year Pure & Applied Science students, were thrilled to have the opportunity to introduce many fellow students to the fun of robotics.
“Most of our team is new. The whole team came to the competition, which showed their dedication,” James said. They did not limit students to any specific task; students were free to participate in all aspects.
It was really important that everyone participate so the Dawson team can do well again next year, James and Jason said. They will be leaving Dawson to study engineering but hope to be back to help the Dawson Robotics team. The pair of friends have been involved in robotics for five years, first at high school and then at Dawson. “It is so gratifying to see other students learn and grasp the solutions,” James said.
A step toward robotics for all
With the support of SPACE and SSAP, this is a step toward making robotics accessible to all, Joel said. The CRC Robotics competition is for high school and CEGEP students and it is often the high schools that end up winning because they have dedicated space and resources for supporting para-academic activities. This year’s team innovated and self-organized with many more constraints. We hope the excitement and momentum gained from this year’s results will lead to deeper learning and engagement with robotics activities for more Dawson students in the future, he said.
There is so much to learn through robotics. James and Jason said some of the things they learn include software programming, robot design, 3D printing, techniques like soldering and problem-solving.