Rock and Roll with the Mad Rockers Robotics Team!

Christine Pham, Writer

The Mad Rockers robotics team is always looking for new members! The team meets outside of school, multiple days a week, with a flexible schedule for everyone. Both Bob Jones and James Clemens are combined into one large team. The teacher sponsor for Bob Jones, Mr. Bailey, was asked to answer some questions.

What kind of content is covered in robotics?

Robotics is a club/competition team, so there is no real “curriculum”.  That said, to complete everything we need to do we have to learn from a wide range of subjects.  Big topics include the engineering design process, robot programming, manufacturing, problem-solving, and electronics.

 What different roles are there on the team?

We have several defined roles, and we are constantly looking at what new roles we can create to improve the team. Current roles include hardware captain, software captain, Marketing Chairperson, Business president, Safety Captain, and Electrical captain.

Who sponsors the team?

JIT Services sponsors us by allowing us to use space in their building for free.  Boeing and National Fire Protection both help fund our annual competition.  This year we also received a $1000 grant from Aerojet Rocketdyne to improve our Safety Plan.
I am the teacher sponsor.

Where does, and when does the club usually meet?

The club currently meets Monday, Thursday, and Saturday virtually or at our off-site location.

What kind of competitions does the team go to?

We compete in 2 competitions each year. In the fall we compete in the BEST robotics competition. In the spring we compete in the FIRST Robotics Competition. Both are competitions where we have a limited time (usually 6 weeks), to design and build a robot to compete in a game competing with and against other robots from other schools.

Do you have anything else to say?

Although robotics is in the name, the Madison City robotics club offers many opportunities in marketing, business, art, and other areas of interest. We are also the only club that combines both Bob Jones High School and James Clemens High School into one team that competes together.

 

Senior member Easten Phillips from Bob Jones and Alex Underwood from James Clemens were also asked about their experiences.

What is your favorite part of the team?

 My favorite part of the team is being able to work with everyone in a friendly environment.

What role do you have in the team?

 I am currently the electrical team captain, meaning I’m in charge of the wiring and power systems of our robot.

Are there any fun activities that you do during the meetings?

The funnest part of working on the team aside from the engineering itself is working with everyone and trying to do our best as a team.

Are there any fundraisers? If so, what are some examples?

We have worked with local companies before on fundraisers in the past.

Why should people join Robotics?

People should join Robotics if they enjoy working on more real-world projects and a teamwork-focused environment.

How do you feel about getting to work with students from the opposing school?

School rivalry or competition doesn’t really apply to the robotics team, since we meet outside of school and we all have the same goal to work towards we don’t really pay any attention to who’s from which school.

If anyone is interested in joining the robotics team, they can email Mr. Bailey at [email protected]madisoncity.k12.al.us.