Robotics team hosting pre-season event

For the sixth straight year, Oxford’s TORC 2137 robotics team will host up to 10 other area teams at a Week Zero practice event.

The event will be held on Saturday, Feb. 17 and Sunday, Feb. 18 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Oxford High School (745 N. Oxford Rd.)

According to Mentor Lynda Bertich, Oxford’s robotics team hosts this event every year to honor one of FIRST Robotics Competition’s core values, “Gracious Professionalism,” which emphasizes the value of others and encourages all FIRST robotics teams to respect individuals and the community.

“Not many schools have a full field for their teams to practice on or a machine shop like Oxford High School to work on their robots in,” Bertich said. “We just want our kids to get involved in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) and to have fun building the robot. But we build more than robots, we’re building character and teaching our students life lessons. We’re building future leaders . . . It doesn’t matter if you win or lose, it’s (about) how you play the game.”

Students will spend the weekend tweaking and programming their robots in preparation for the season’s upcoming FIRST Robotics competitions.

The practice event will also feature a full-size playing field, constructed by TORC 2137 Mentor Tom Bertich and others, which will allow the teams to give their bots a test-run before competitions begin in the official season.

TORC 2137 will head to Waterford for its first competition of the season on Saturday, March 10 and Sunday, March 11.

TORC 2137 is seeking volunteers for the FIRST Championship event which will be held in Detroit April 25-28. Volunteers are needed for a wide range of duties throughout the competition including assistance in the event pit, assistance with registration and distribution of safety goggles during the competition.

Those who would like to become a volunteer at the FIRST Championship in Detroit on April 25-28 are encouraged to visit


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