RoboRams kick off build season

The RoboRams bring a lot of creativity to MV and have a lot to offer to students.


Mikanda Wilkey, Staff

Mr. Dustin Foster, engineering and robotics teacher, and team members recently explained more about our robotics team as Vernois News sat down to find out more.

“The RoboRams is a competitive robotics team that competes in a nationwide competition and inspires you to pursue STEM careers through experiences and mentorship,” Ryan Bendersky, team member, stated.

“We also produce stronger students. We train students in stem skills and we train students in skills that are relevant for our workforce,” Mr. Foster, engineering and robotics teacher, added.

“The RoboRams is a team where we discuss, design and build a robot, we program it and find a strategy to play a game for the first robotics competition. While we do all that, we also have fun and eat dinner together,” Alice Feltrin, ’23 added.

RoboRams bring the real world application aspect to students and many MV students appreciate the learning of RoboRams.

“The thing I really enjoy about RoboRams is the real world application. Most academic type clubs you have to take a test or you will interview or give a speech and honestly that is not always a real world application for us you either write the code and it works or not and you have to work in a team you design the robot and it works or it don’t,” Mr. Foster stated.

“I love the experiences and challenges I get to tackle every day as it teaches me so much and prepares me for my future career in engineering,” Bendersky added.

“What I genuinely enjoy about RoboRams is the time I spend with my friends and how it helps me comprehend how a team job works, and the real skills that it makes me achieve and improve,” Feltrin mentioned.

A catalyst to the main enjoyment of RoboRams is their annual build season.

“Our build season starting January 7th began once we received an animation video of the game our robot will be participating in. This game is vastly unique every year we must produce a brand new robot. After we are informed on what we need to do, we begin designing, fabricating and programming our robot before our competition in eight weeks,” Bendersky stated.

“The build season is where we find out what field we have to build on. The season lasts from January through April,” Joseph Jones, ‘25 added.

Along with the team’s build season, the RoboRams has many other features and opportunities that correlate with other MV organizations.

“AG industry is becoming more automotive and more robot-sized so we can work well with FFA. We also have a whole business component to our team, we have to fundraised 30,000 dollars this season in situations of real money and consequences so we can also work well with FBLA,” Mr. Foster stated.

To accomplish everything that this team has to offer, the RoboRams forms an officer structure to spearhead different departments.

“We have a corporate structure to our team are CEO. Our chief executive officer is Cassie White, and she is what her title says she takes command of everything she has a lot of responsibility and it’s really her year, then we have our chief financial officer Jackson Mills he is in charge of sponsorships and getting us money and making sure that the finances are right. Then we have our chief operations officer Gabe Bishop he is in charge of all the robot building stuff making sure we have the parts the tools and then were ready to build robots. Also we have a PR officer that just dedicated to the media that’s Joseph Jones and he goes through and does the facebook he writes press releases and any of the decorations you see with RoboRams that is up to Joseph. Then, finally, we have an outreach officer currently that is Ryan Bendersky and his job is to go out to the junior highs and even elementary schools and we have lego league programs and camps and all sorts of things and he helps direct those things,” Mr. Foster said.

The RoboRams brings everything together each year for one goal, going to FIRST Robotics Competitions.

“The RoboRams will compete in FIRST Charged Up with a competition robot made in eight weeks,” Bendersky said.

“This year we are going to St. Louis and Sedalia, if we get first places we go to worlds in Houston, Texas,” Jones stated.

How long have you led or been in RoboRams?

“I’ve been at MV for about 11 years and I got into RoboRams my second year here. Now I’ve been in RoboRams for 9 years. I started leading RoboRams 7 or so years ago,” Mr. Foster said.

“This is my first year in RoboRams. I joined because, during my exchange year, I wanted to try a lot of things I’m not gonna have the chance to try when I come back. Overall, for what I want to do in the future, this club is a great opportunity to learn useful skills,” Feltrin added.

Bendersky stated, “I have been in RoboRams for all four years of my high school career. I have been in leadership for all 4 years and an officer since my junior year. I am one of the design leads along with being the programming and electronics lead.”

“I have been on the team for four years now. This is also my fourth year in leadership on the team. I became the head design lead my freshman year and have remained in that position for all four years. I am also the CEO of the team this year,” White mentioned.

“I think everyone should try RoboRams just to check it out,” Jones stated.

“RoboRams is open to anyone willing to learn our provided STEM skills; design process, computer modeling, fabrication skill, welding, programming, wiring, etc. Don’t be afraid to stop by and be a part of the fun,” Bendersky mentioned.