MINNEAPOLIS — White Bear Lake Area High School students and their mentors from Medtronic mixed it up against robotics teams from around the state during the Minnesota FIRST North Star Regional competition in Mariucci Arena at the University of Minnesota.
24 students spent six weeks and approximately 1,300 hours building their robot, with the help of another 500 hours of time from seven engineering mentors from Medtronic. The team was challenged to solve a common problem using a standard "kit of parts" and a common set of rules.
The popularity of the regional event has grown dramatically in the last four years. In 2006 two teams competed, followed by 16 in 2007, 54 in 2008 and 81 teams were divided into the North Star and 10,000 Lakes regions this year.
The team from White Bear Lake finished 34th and was selected by the seventh-seeded Great River High School to compete in the finals matches on Saturday, April 4.
It was not among the top three teams in each region to advance to the national competition.
— Photos and video by Paul Dols