HHS robotics team wins AFCEA Rising Star Award

HHS robotics team wins AFCEA Rising Star Award
Posted on 11/09/2018

Harlandale High School’s robotics team “RoboWarriors” recently won the AFCEA Rising Star Award at the SA BEST (Boosting Engineering, Science and Technology) competition held at St. Mary’s University.

The award provided five $500 college scholarships to senior Jessica Escobar, senior Marisol Gutierrez, junior Adam Mann, junior Jovanny Gutierrez and junior Jacob Bauer. In addition, the team’s coach Narciso Garza received a $1,000 stipend to fund equipment, supplies and materials. 

The Rising Star Award is presented to the robotics team that finds success in spite of challenges and adversity. The team of 13 students showed incredible dedication working long hours and weekends to prepare for the competition with limited supplies and space. They competed against 39 teams from different high schools and finished in 14th place.  

“It’s an overwhelming group of intelligent, determined kids,” Harlandale HS Coach Garza said. “They put up with a lot of pressure from me, and they come back for more. I am very impressed with their resilience, nothing will shut them down, and they are determined to keep on moving. It’s amazing.”

Retired teacher Beth Garza, Coach Garza’s wife, is also a part of the team and could not be prouder of the students’ accomplishment.

“They went against all odds, and they won,” she said. “This is dedication like I’ve never seen before.”

The students spent five weeks preparing for the competition and all agreed that it was a great learning experience. Working together, they built a robot, created a creative display board, wrote an engineering notebook and presented a marketing plan to the judges.

“This experience taught me a lot about leadership and working as a team,” Jessica said. “After working on the engineering notebook, I realized that I want to pursue a degree in engineering. And, I know that being a part of this robotics team is helping me prepare for that.”

Congratulations, RoboWarriors!

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