Student Life: Robotics

The goal of the Robotics Team is to promote learning through the application of engaging projects that stimulate scientific and mathematical thought while encouraging students to pursue their dreams. Through the application of robotics in a competitive atmosphere, Bethlehem Robotics promotes “outside the box” and critical thought among its team members. Additionally, the use of computer technologies and the application of software engineering within the constraints of the team’s projects elevate the level of computer awareness and capabilities among the team members. 

The Bethlehem Robotics Team strives to promote an enthusiasm for learning and STEM skills among its members through the application of robotics and software design in a competitive setting.

We are intended to equip students to continue their education beyond the classroom. Bethlehem Robotics Team members will encounter more than just a constructive and competitive learning environment; they will be given the opportunity to develop essential skills with modern computing technologies.

During the competition period, the team will be tasked with designing, developing, and constructing a robotic system to complete specific goals which are changed and disclosed on a yearly basis. This system will consist of three essential assemblies. The first of these assemblies is the actual mechanical structure of the robot. This includes frameworks, wheels, joints, and any other structures creatively engineered by team members. The second assembly consists of the electrical systems both on, and supporting the robot. These systems include sensors, wiring, computers, motors, power supplies, and data and power distribution modules which will be wired by the team’s design. The third and perhaps, least visible assembly is the background software which runs the robot. Little prior knowledge is needed regarding software design, as the creators of the systems we use put extra effort towards making a friendly system which is flexible and easy to troubleshoot. Team members are still free to design whatever software is deemed necessary for the problem under consideration, but are able to do so on a system which is relatively stable, easy to work with, capable of various tasks, and relevant to the modern market. Through the handling of the robot’s computing systems, team members will obtain valuable experience and marketable skills with the widespread Android platform.

Despite having a set three-system schematic for the robot, members will be encouraged to “think outside the box” while operating within well-defined safety parameters. There is no reasonable limit to the number of ways any particular competition goal can be met, and as such, team members are encouraged to design safe, reliable, creative, and efficient solutions to complex problems. The supportive environment presented by the Bethlehem Robotics team will encourage and help develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills while uplifting creative thought and essential interpersonal skills needed to present and support an idea or design. Today’s STEM fields are a dynamic and rapidly changing structure which requires equally dynamic, adaptable, and passionate individuals who are willing to step outside the boundaries of the ordinary in order to bring about something better. Today’s youth need to be prepared for tomorrow’s world. Participation in Bethlehem’s Robotics team acts as another step forward toward becoming a better individual, toward creating a brighter tomorrow for oneself and the world.

-G.J. Oldeloohuis '16
Charter Member
Bethlehem Robotics Team





 Chad McCoy
Coach McCoy is a local attorney interested in promoting enthusiasm for STEM among young people. He inititated a robotics team at St. Joseph Elementary and continues to build the program at Bethlehem.


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