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Nutfield News • March 10, 2011 Pinkerton Robotics Team Ready for More Challenges


——◆ —––– Despite a few setbacks,

Pinkerton Academy’s FIRST Robotics team put forth a solid performance at this year’s competition.


though they didn’t place, seniors Robert Dabrowski and Hayden Hicks, a co- captain, said the event was “a great learning experi- ence.” FIRST is For Inspir- ation and Recognition of Science and Technology, an organization founded in 1989 to develop ways to inspire students in engineer- ing and technology fields. “FIRST is about a lot more than just building a robot,” said Pinkerton engi-

neering teacher and team co- advisor Joe Cunningham, who noted that “the best robot doesn’t always win.” Students with a variety of skills are recruited to partici- pate, as the competition is comprised of engineering, programming, design, and even business components. For example, marketing stu- dents help raise money from sponsors to fund construction of the robot, according to Hicks. Pinkerton’s sponsors included BAE Systems, Fireye, and several other independent business owners. Students who competed

on Pinkerton’s team were co-captains Hayden Hicks and Erik Shaw, and Robert Dabrowski, Joshua Bayley,

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From left, Dan Pelletier, a sophomore at the University of New Hampshire and a mentor to the Pinkerton Robotics team, works on making final adjustments to the team robot during the seeding round held Friday at Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, with team members Robert Dabrowski, Evan Merrill and Dick DiPasquale.

Photos by Chris Paul

Joshua Curto, Sam Davis, Dick DiPasquale, Nate Dube, Christian Fuller, Philip Goff, Andy Gordon, Jared Gosselin, Joey Groch, James Harding, Mary-Beth Huston, Alex Jackson, David Johnson, Michael Joncas, Michael Locke, Joseph Locore, Cameron Martineau, Evan Merrill, Nick Paolino, Daniel Re- zaee, Anthony Rosa, Josh Saltzberg-Pollard, Matt Shumway, Aaron Spinney, Morgan Tombanelli, Daniel Turner, Sam Vayens, Scott Venti, Tucker Wallace, Nick Woodward, and Drew Zeiba.

Robert Dabrowski, right, a Pinkerton Academy senior , shows off his team’s robot to his grandmother, Maryann Skwierz, and his father, Robert Dabrowski.

The team had six weeks

to build its robot, which was challenged to complete a


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series of tasks during the competition, such as climb- ing up a metal pole. Un- fortunately, programming problems, broken parts, and communication issues creat- ed problems for the team during the competition. “The issues are normal,” Cunningham said, noting that the students did a great job of identifying the issues and addressing them during

the competition. “We did quite well.”

“The kids all kept their heads up and they kept at it. The team work was amazing - they cooperated with one another and helped out other teams - the spirit of the whole team was incredible,” co-advisor Peggy Blanchard said. “It was something they’ll always remember.” And Pinkerton’s team

will have another shot at winning its robot an award when they compete in a Boston robotics event in April. The team has already boxed up the robot and will meet for the rest of the month to refine their strate- gy.

“They’re going to do amazingly well in Boston,” Blanchard said.

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