On Saturday, Jan. 11 and Sunday, Jan. 12, Ripley High School was the location to be for all things robotic as Ripley hosted a VEX Robotics Tournament.

What is robotics?

According to Wikipedia, robotics deals with the design, construction, operation, and use of robots, as well as computer systems for their control, sensory feedback, and information processing. These technologies are used to develop machines that can substitute for humans and replicate human actions.

The VEX Robotics Competition is a robotics competition for elementary through university students.

Saturday’s competition consisted of VEX VRC high school and middle school competition with 24 teams, while Sunday focused on middle and elementary school competition with VEX IQ and included 13 teams participating.

Ripley High School Rip City Beep Boop Robotics Team won the Excellence Award in Saturday’s competition.

The Excellence Award is the highest award presented in the VEX Robotics competition. This award is presented to a team that exemplifies overall excellence in building a high-quality robotics program. This team is a strong contender in numerous award categories.

Melissa Lough, the Robotics Class Instructor at Ripley High School, said that this award now qualifies the high school team for the State Robotics Tournament on March 3 at Fairmont State College.

Ripley Robotics team members served as volunteers for the elementary and middle school VEX IQ tournament on Sunday, where the Ripley Middle School sixth grade team won the Judges Award.

The Judges Award is presented to a team that the judges determine is deserving of special recognition. Judges consider a number of possible criteria for this award, such as team displays of special attributes, exemplary effort, and perseverance at the event, or team accomplishments or endeavors throughout the season that may not fit under existing awards, but are nonetheless deserving of special recognition.

According to Lough, this was the first competition for the middle school team, who is coached by Brenda Brown.