Veterans Middle School knocks out competition at HESTEC Robotics Day
Knocking all the required blocks off an obstacle course with more than a minute to spare with its robot "Nano Doctor," the Veterans Middle School team from Rio Grande City secured its place as champion of the 2012 Robotics Day at The University of Texas-Pan American Hispanic Engineering, Science and Technology (HESTEC) conference.The event was sponsored by Time Warner Cable and AEP Texas.Though they bested McAllen's Travis Middle School and Peñitas' Dr. Javier Saenz Middle School for the top spot, team members remained humble after the competition on Thursday, Sept. 27 at the Fieldhouse."We're winners just for being here," said Gabrielle Peña, an eighth-grade student at Veterans Middle School.Veterans Memorial won iPads for each team member. Team members from Travis Middle received iPod Touches for placing second and Dr. Javier Saenz Middle team members received Texas Instrument calculators for earning third place.More than 200 students from 40 middle schools from across the Rio Grande Valley vied for iPads, trophies and other prizes during Robotics Day.The teams spent weeks designing their robots using the LEGO Mindstorm 2.0 set, creating a corporation name and developing a five-to 30-second commercial that advertises the robot. The programmable robot model system includes a microcomputer brick and intuitive drag-and-drop programming software.