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Baltimore robotics club advances to district championship in first year

A Baltimore robotics team is getting ready to compete in a district championship this weekend in Richmond, Va.

BALTIMORE (WBFF) -- A Baltimore robotics team is getting ready to compete in a district championship this weekend in Richmond, Va.

The Baltimore Bolts are the city's first competitive robotics team. They are comprised of six students from four city high schools.

"Essentially, we are a rainbow of a team, different walks of life, different experiences from day to day" Merventhaler Vocational Tech High School student Ari Barnett-Goodwin said. "I would say our success is us having this team."

In the Bolts' inaugural season, they qualified for the district championship in Richmond, Va., where they will be competing April 6-8.

"Only 58 teams get to advance--and, we're a rookie team. Usually it's difficult to get the robot to move, let alone play the game," volunteer coach Mike Kaurich said. "Longterm, we see this program as something that has 20-25 students every single year who we're really able to have a longscale impact on--really treating this like a varsity sport of the mind."

Kaurich is now raising funds to grow the program, which receives resources already from The Baltimore Robotics Society, Stanley Black & Decker, NASA, OpenWorks, Sylvan, and the Maryland Small Business Roundtable.

"(The students) are not happy with the status quo. They're asking what's next, what can we improve, what can we do to make the machine better, what can we do to learn more?" Kaurich asked. "The reason why you learn math is not just because you're being told that you need to learn math. The reason that you need to learn math is it's because it's something that's going to make you an engineer or make you a doctor and you're able to help people."

To learn more about the Bolts, go to baltimorebolts.com or email Kaurich at mike@baltimorebolts.com.

To donate to help the Bolts on their trip to Richmond, visit their gofundme page here


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