Next Gen Robotics, a robotics team sponsored by Umpqua Valley Christian School, brought last year’s competition robot to Saturday’s event at the Roseburg Public Library which allowed patrons to test drive a surgical robot.

Coach and parent, Pat Skrip, said he brought the team to challenge and inspire them.

“They may not all become surgeons and use this technology, but they could be the technician repairing the surgical robot,” he said, adding that robotics can be used in all fields. “These kids are doing amazing things.”

UVCS junior Jonathon Jacobsen said he liked to see how science and technology come together.

His teammate and UVCS senior Rogue Skrip said, “I have no plans as far as what I want to do with robotics in the future, but it gives me optimism to see what it can be applied to.

“What interests me is allowing more control over the human error percentage.”

The club has five members, four students attend UVCS and one attends Geneva Academy. The club is recruiting for next year, and in addition to the two Christian schools, also allows home-schooled students to join.

While they meet just once a week, Pat Skrip estimated each member spends approximately 20 hours a week on robotics or outreach.

“It’s not just robotics, but it’s about team building, setting goals and expectations and outreach,” Pat Skrip said.

The club participates in First Tech Challenge events, which was a jump for Geneva senior Aidan Allen, who started working with robotics in First Lego League.

Allen joined the club last year, and has enjoyed the more technical aspect and specific goal setting in the new league.

The club has started brainstorming for its robot this year and will be competing throughout the fall and winter.

“We have a lot of good design from the get-go, that’s an indicator of a bright-looking season,” Allen said.

Sanne Godfrey can be reached at sgodfrey@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4203. Follow her on Twitter @sannegodfrey.

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