CTE Helps Students Engineer Skills Needed in the Workforce
Posted on 02/17/2023
Steve, an 18” square-foot robot, along with its creators, 12 students in GCISD’s Career and Technical Education (CTE) robotics team, are headed to Arlington for the First Tech Challenge (FTC) North Texas semi-regional robotics championship Saturday, February 18.

In preparation, the team continues their work on Steve.

“This week we are taking Steve apart because we are switching out the chassis so he can be more efficient on the floor in picking up the cones,” said Liv Nevin, a junior who is one of the team members.

That is important because this year’s challenge focuses on stacking cones through upright poles. Students have to ensure their robot is competition ready by programming it for the two-and-a-half minute challenge. During competition, they partner with another team to face off against two other teams with the goal of emphasizing respectful competition. They also get to utilize skills they learn in robotics classes, which are part of the science, technology, engineering and mathematics cluster in GCISD’s CTE program.

“They learn about programming, mechanisms, automation, computer-aided design (CAD), the design process, problem solving and taking initiative, which is not only huge for the competition, but for life," said James McCarthy, CTE robotics instructor and the team’s advisor.

McCarthy is also developing partnerships with companies and engineers, which further help the program since engineers come in and work with students in developing their skills.

Nevin, who wants to enter the computer science or engineering field, said that in addition to learning about CAD, 3-D modeling, building and robotics, she also really likes the class “because I feel like it prepares us for the real world.”

Learn more about GCISD’s 11 CTE clusters by visiting their webpage.