Conifer High School's robotics team decided to come to the aid of the Denver East High School team on March 22 in the wake of the two administrators who were shot there and the chaos afterward.
During the school lockdown last week, the East High School Angelbotics team was concerned it would not be able to return to the school to pick up its robot and tools for the FIRST Robotics Competition at the University of Denver on March 23.
“So we had a team meeting,” Conifer junior Hannah Stauffer said, “and we all realized that East might need a robot or possibly another team might have an emergency and need a robot.”
Conifer's robotics team, called Team Blitz 2085, made a quick plan and got to work, spending about seven hours building an extra robot for the competition while putting the finishing touches on its own robot.
Luckily, Angelbotics was able to compete using its own robot.
Team Blitz 2085 embodies the notion of coopertition, which is cooperating despite being in a competition, a tenet of FIRST Robotics. It means helping other teams, so all can be successful.
“Our kids were in the middle of finishing their robot, and they decided to do what they could to give the East kids a chance to participate," Conifer team mentor Mindy Hanson said.
She said FIRST Robotics charges each team a $6,000 nonrefundable registration fee, so it would have been heartbreaking if the East team couldn’t participate through no fault of its own.
Stauffer said all of the teams have a family dynamic because of their shared love of robotics.
“Being able to help anyone we can puts us in a good place,” Stauffer explained. “We want to help any way we can. It’s part of the whole spirit of the coopertition mentality. You help people and they help you no matter what.”
Stauffer said she hopes all people will embody the spirit of helping others.
“I hope people in the world generally have a good heart,” she said, “and want to help people who have worked so hard and have something happen out of their control.”