Tiger Talk: Pine River-Backus School is looking for robotics team members - Pine and Lakes Echo Journal

Tiger Talk: Pine River-Backus School is looking for robotics team members – Pine and Lakes Echo Journal

Pine River-Backus’ bot season is starting and he’s looking to add more to the team.

While building robots may sound like something from science fiction to some of us, our students are learning real-world applications on the PR-B Robotics Team. Today, robots can be found all around us performing tasks unnoticed.

The high school robotics team works with larger robots that they design to perform specific tasks depending on the challenge of the game.

In life, robots are useful as tools for manufacturing, space exploration, medical applications, and more.

Being part of a robotics team is not only fun, but it exposes students to robotics and can propel them into the jobs of the future and solve real-world problems.

The PR-B Robotics team is looking for new student members interested in design, construction, wiring, programming, and more for the upcoming 2023 season. Our team competes in the FIRST Robotics High School Robotics Contest section.

Each season, we build a new full-size bot to compete with dozens of other teams in a newly designed, challenging game, which the FRC team will announce at the beginning of January.

We will have until the beginning of March to design, build and program a machine that can complete the various elements of the new game. Challenges vary, but often involve catching dodge balls and throwing them into a scoring target, moving or stacking game pieces, and often some form of climbing (which can be a fun challenge when the bots are over 100 pounds!).

Our biggest annual competitive event is a multi-day tournament in Duluth where we play 60-90 other teams three on three. We pilot our robot and a variety of tools and parts to stay in a hotel for a few nights and endure three days of spirited competition to see how our robot and team fare against other teams from all over Minnesota and beyond.

Robotics team.  jpg

The Pine River-Backus 2021 Robotics Team.


This tournament is a big undertaking and we currently have plenty of room for additional student assistance, from scouting for other teams to helping with promotional materials and collegiate media.

At this time, we have one space open in the “Drive Team” who manages and runs the bot on the playfield.

There are many roles and opportunities available in the team, with varying levels of commitment and responsibilities. It is sometimes possible to mix participation in a robotics team with other clubs, activities, or jobs.

We strive for a fun and flexible arrangement that fits well and benefits both the individual student and the team as a whole.

If you are (or know) a student who might be interested in learning more about the team and anything to do with robot building, wiring, programming, etc., have them contact Mike Shetka in the technical office.

Enrollment is open at Campus Infinite to all students in grades 7-12 for the winter season of robotics. After school meetings begin in January, right after the winter break.

We will have a meeting in December, during school hours, for questions and answers (to be announced at a later date).

Mike Schetka is the head robotics instructor for the Pine River Backus School District.

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