By Autumn Pecarovich, student journalist for Minarets Press
OAKHURST — To foster a love for robotics in a new generation, Mikey King hosted a robotics clinic for third through eighth graders at the Boys and Girls Club of Oakhurst. The clinic was held on Feb. 18 and 19 and there were over 20 attendees from Wasuma Elementary, Oakhurst Elementary and Oak Creek Intermediate.
King focused on combining engineering, competition and legos, to create a fun and educational experience.
Participants built three projects over the course of the two-day clinic with robotics kits borrowed from a board member of the Bass Lake Education Foundation. The projects included a marshmallow catapult, claw machine and a free build project.
Participants Deagan Tashiro and Kobe Simmons won in the catapult category.
King spoke about why he chose this as his SLE, “Robotics is something I’ve been interested in since freshman year. I ran into the robotics teacher at YHS and the program was exactly what I wanted to do. Taking his class blossomed my passion for robotics. I wanted to spread my passion and thought this could be a way where I could help others and ignite a spark in them.”
In the future King is hoping to pursue robotics as a career and he plans on attending Fresno State and majoring in mechanical engineering with an emphasis on robotics engineering.
Donations from the clinic were put toward Epic Science Time, which is the Boys and Girls Club STEM program. King said that he wanted the proceeds to go to this program because “I wanted to put more funding into STEM so that they will be able to do more projects and it’s something I’ve always been interested in.”
The Boys and Girls Club organization has had a tremendous impact on King; “I don’t know where I would be without the Boys and Girls Club. I’ve learned what it means to be a leader, built my character, and self-confidence.”
With this clinic, King was able to share this interest in STEM with the future generation. King stated that he hopes this clinic, “sparked an interest and impacted at least one kid at the clinic. I remember one of the parents told me that the day before their kids thought they wouldn’t have fun but then after the first day they came home and couldn’t stop talking about it.”
Overall, Mikey King’s SLE was a great success and the legacy he left on these students will carry with them for a lifetime.