Robotics main
District students prepare their robot for battle-- or, at least "competition"-- during a weekend event of preparation hosted at RWJBarnabas Health Arena.

Oct. 25, 2021-- This past weekend, all four district robotics teams hosted a 10-team practice meet at RWJBarnabas Health Arena.

Saturday, Oct. 23 began bright and early for participants with breakfast at 7 a.m. Teams set up tables and chairs, practice fields and pits to work on their robots. Workshops were provided in classrooms on topics like FTCNJ STEM Girls, competitiveness, mechanical design using CAD, and computer programming.

This year's robotics theme is Freight Frenzy. FIRST® Robotics teams explored the future of transportation, from the shipment of packages in rural and urban areas, to disaster relief delivery and high-tech air transit. Team were tasked with re-imagining faster, more reliable, inclusive, and sustainable transportation innovations that better connect and grow communities and economies around the world. By encouraging FIRST® participants to think about future transportation sustainability, district educators and club advisors are empowering them to be the next generation of leaders and innovators, tackling the world’s toughest challenges.

The day culminated with practice competitions, and the Enforcers from High School East's Raiders Short Circuits club earning the top spot.

The season has just begun and teams are still accepting participants. All are welcome, and robotics is a perfect fit for students interested in designing, building, marketing, programming or providing support through volunteerism. Intermediate North's Cyber Fins coaches are Mr. Ruhl and Mrs. Steinberg; High School South's team Voltron coaches are Mr. Miller and Mrs. Ferraro; High School North's Iron Mariners coaches are Mrs. Midili and Mrs. Tischio; and High School East's Raiders Short Circuits coaches are Mr. and Mrs. DelGesso.

Meetings are often held after school. The competitive season runs through February with state championships in early March and world championships in April.

Toms River Regional Schools will be hosting the next large-scale robotics event, the Jersey Shore Showdown, at RWJBarnabas Health Arena Jan. 29, 2022. Facility use for that event will be funded through Perkins; team registrations will be generously funded by the district's partners at NAWCAD Lakehurst; and individual teams continue to welcome support, with sponsors earning a spot on team materials, T-shirts, banners, and more.