The Tech Club at Trinity Christian School’s Newnan high school campus was chartered in 2014. Its mission is to reach and develop future leaders in science and technology through teamwork, community service, and applied STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math). The Tech Club is a general-interest technology club offering on-campus meetings helping students explore and develop their interests in applied science, technology, engineering, and math.
The Tech Club also fields a FIRST Robotics Competition team, Rex Machina (5582), a rookie team in 2015. The FIRST organization (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) sponsors divisional, regional, and international robotics contests. In the FIRST Robotics Competition, students work with professional mentors and construct a robot out of industrial components for arena competition against other robots. The goals of the arena contest are different every year, and teams have just 6 weeks from the time contest rules are revealed to build and program their robots.
The 2016 game is named Stronghold and was revealed January 9. The robotics team members put in long hours into getting their robot ready to compete at the Georgia District competition in Columbus. Incredibly, our team came home with five awards: The Imagery Award, The Industrial Safety Award , the Friday Star of the Day Award (presented to Hannah Rosenhack), Deans List Semi-Finalist (awarded to Alex Whitaker) and the Dean’s List Finalist (presented to Hannah Rosenhack). Our robot was badly damaged in many matches during competition, but thanks to our tireless pit crew, Chris Thomas, Alex Whitaker, and Cade Skinner, our team went on to compete at the district competition in Kennesaw on April 8-10 and the GA Peachtree District State Championship at the University of GA on April 14-16. At the Kennesaw 2016 District Event, Rex Machina earned Safety Pit of the Day and the Entrepreneurship Award. At the 2016 Georgia FIRST Peachtree State Championship, the team won Safety Star of the Day (awarded to Hannah Rosenhack) the Gracious Professionalism Award, and the Industrial Safety Award. Rex Machina ranked 24 out of 65 teams in the state of GA.
Fifteen Trinity high school students attended regular Tech Club meetings and workshop sessions through the fall, learning skills and preparing for the intense robot build period beginning in January. Of these 15 students, 8 stepped forward to meet the challenge of the demanding Rex Machina after-school workshop schedule during the 2015 rookie season. All 8 students are Beta club inductees, and most participate in other school sports and activities. Despite their busy schedules, each of them devoted at least 120 hours over 10 weeks to the task of building their robot and participating in the Peachtree Regional competition in March 2015.
Judges recognized the hard work of the Rex Machina team at competition. The team took home the Industrial Safety Award for developing and applying a strong safety program. And they won the highest honor a rookie team can win, the Rookie All-Star Award, recognizing the strongest all-around program with great potential for the future. This award came with an invitation to the FIRST Championship at the end of April in St. Louis, Missouri. There the young team competed among the top 600 robotics teams from around the world. They built alliances and friendships with teams from around the US and from Australia, Israel, Colombia, Brazil, Mexico, and Canada. And they brought home a coveted pit safety award autographed by FIRST founder Dean Kamen.
Tech Club activities include:
Tech Club web site: www.tcstechclub.com
Rex Machina web site: www.rexmachinatcs.com
Mentor name: Chris Taylor
Phone: 404-668-2937 m
Mentor name: Bethany Thomas
Phone: 404-450-8224 m
Checks should be made payable to:
Trinity Booster Club (with “Tech Club” in the memo/for section)
Trinity Tech Club
ATTN: Chris Taylor
PO Box 178
Tyrone, GA 30290