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Craft Academy students compete in robotics competition

Robotics team working on a projectThe Craft Robotics Team of the Craft Academy for Excellence in Science and Mathematics at Morehead State University recently traveled to Huntsville, Alabama to participate in the Rocket City Regional robotics competition, hosted at the Von Braun Center.  

First Robotics competitions pit teams and their robots against each other in a fun and competitive game. The game changes every year, adding new levels of complexity and elements of surprise that challenge students.  

The Rocket City Regional competition was the first event the Craft Academy team has attended. Craft Robotics coaches, Dr. Jorge Ortega-Moody and Jason Stepp of the Department of Engineering and Technology Management, accompanied Craft Academy students on the trip. Students who participated in the competition were:   
  •  Chase Ballard, senior, Crittenden.  
  • Cole Bell, junior, Monticello.  
  • Clay Berryman, senior, Winchester.  
  • Cole Danzer, senior, Crittenden.  
  • Emma Humphress, senior, Lebanon.  
  • Lottie Maynard, senior, Dana.  
  • William McIntosh, senior, Jackson.  
  • Sara Olmsted, senior, Richmond.  
  • Michael White, senior, Quincy.  
  • Sydney Winters, junior, Cattletsburg.  
  • Jake Williams, senior, Union.   
Fifty-five teams from 12 states, including six teams from Kentucky, and one team from Brazil attended the Rocket City Regional competition. The qualifying round of competition began on Friday, March 15, and continued Saturday, March 16, with each team competing in 10 qualifying matches. Each match consists of two three-team alliances competing against each other with the winning alliance gaining ranking points. The Craft Robotics Team was on the victorious alliance in three of their ten qualification matches. The Craft Robotics Team finished 45th in their first competitive experience.

 The First Robotics Competition gives high school students and their adult mentors the opportunity to work and create together to solve a common problem. Challenged to design and build a robot using a standard kit of parts and within a common set of rules to play a sophisticated field game, all in just six weeks brings out the best in students and adults alike. The robot “game” changes every season and can be quite exciting.  

 “This was a great learning opportunity for the Craft Robotics team, as they were able to compete with and against teams with years of experience in First Robotics events,” said Jason Stepp, laboratory and facilities manager for the Department of Engineering and Technology Management who serves as an assistant coach. “The experience gained will be valuable for the team as they prepare for their next competition.”  

 For more information on the Craft Academy for Excellence in Science and Mathematics at Morehead State University, visit, email or call 606-783-2093. 
Top photo: Group photo: The Craft Academy Robotics Team.

Pictured in the front row, left to right: Lottie Maynard and Chase Ballard.

Back row, left to right: Dr. Jorge Ortega-Moody, Jason Stepp, Clay Berryman, Sydney Winters, Michael White, Will McIntosh, Emma Humphress, David Cole Bell, Jake Williams, Sara Olmsted, Caleb Klenda (University of Louisville student) and Cole Danzer.

Bottom photo: Members of the Craft Academy Robotics Team work on their project for the Rocket City Regional, held March 16 and 17 in Huntsville, Alabama.