OLHMS Students Build an Underwater Robot

Two students work on the group's underwater robot

Two students work on the group’s underwater robot

Thanks to a program through the Shedd Aquarium, students at Oak Lawn-Hometown Middle School are building their own robot for underwater use. After committing to the program the Shedd provided the materials needed for the project including soldering tools, a control board, and PVC pipes to help the students along the project.
Rosalind Reyes, the District STEM Coordinator and Brian Jurinek, a District Instructional Coach also had to commit to training at the Shedd Aquarium, they had the opportunity to work through the design thinking process, practice soldering, and even test an ROV in the string-ray tank at the aquarium.
While the project is fun, Mr. Jurinek hopes the students realize the true value of this program.
“I am truly thankful for the opportunity given to our students by the Shedd Aquarium. Each of our students has been able to perform tasks that professional engineers and scientists experience in their work. The experience gained from designing, soldering, testing, succeeding, and even failing at times has truly been memorable. As the students are nearing the Shedd ROV Celebration, I am hopeful that each student has walked away with knowledge and skills that they would not have received in a traditional classroom. Hopefully, this opportunity has inspired our students to further explore the fields of science and engineering in high school, college, and beyond,” he said.

And while the group isn’t competing in robotics competitions this year, they did get a little extra help from a seasoned champ. Eric Gamboa from Brother Rice High School was incredibly generous to offer his time and knowledge in helping the group through the construction of our first ROV. On Friday, March 9th, he visited with our students throughout the entire afternoon and provided them with tips and ideas. 

The Brother Rice robotics team has been incredibly successful, they recently swept the Shedd Midwest MATE Regional Championships and moved onto the international competition. 
Next, the students will head to Northeastern University on March 24 to test their robot underwater.