Clairton High School robotics team gets into national quarterfinals (By Mary Niederberger / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
The Clairton High School robotics team, who made it to the National BotsIQ Competition in Indianapolis thanks to numerous donations from the public, made it to the quarterfinals of the meet before being knocked out Sunday.
Dennis Beard, an industrial arts teacher who is sponsor of the team, said one of the robots lost in the first round Saturday when its electronics failed to function properly. But the second robot made its way to the quarterfinals, where eight of the original 52 teams from across the nation competed.
The Clairton team was named the grand champions of the regional competition held last month at California University of Pennsylvania. But their trip to the national competition was in doubt because they had difficulty raising the minimum $4,000 needed to attend.
After an article in the Post-Gazette on May 11, numerous donations came from individuals and companies to reach a total of about $58,000 for the robotics team.
The funds left over after paying for the trip to the national competition will be used to fund the program in the future and to expand it to the middle school level. Before the donations were made, members of the robotics team had to raise all of the money needed for the program.
Mr. Beard said the team was initially disappointed at their loss, but quickly recovered and started to make plans for next year. "They've already started to kick around designs and now they know they will have the money to pay for it," he said. "We would really like to send out a thank-you to all who donated to our team."