Last month, on 10/6, Milpitas Xtreme Robotics, the official robotics club of Milpitas High School (MHS), won the Inspire Award in the VEX Robotics Competition. They competed against 50 other teams, and it was the first trophy the club had officially received in over a decade. 

Chloe Wang currently serves as President of the club. She’s a senior at MHS, and has been involved in Milpitas Xtreme Robotics since her freshman year.  

“I love that I have been able to see how much it has grown since then; we have expanded from a small club of 12 that attended 2 competitions yearly to a club of 100+ members, 5 major competitions, 13 divisions, 3 projects, and 7 programs, and 5 outreach events,” said Wang. “However, what I love most about this club has stayed the same throughout all 4 years…Milpitas Xtreme Robotics is more than just a club; we are a team, and we are a family.”

Founded in 2012, the club stepped up to compete at various events for the first several years. But after that, things fell stagnant. In 2016, efforts were made by members to start rebuilding and strengthening the club. 

“It definitely helps that we are constantly fundraising to support the different teams, and have been able to purchase new parts and fund new projects this year,” shared Wang. “Even just a hundred dollars can go a far way with proper budgeting, and money has been a big obstacle for us in the last years, but we are pushing hard to move past it.”

Milpitas Xtreme Robotics’ members are active and engaged, working to take advantage of all available opportunities to learn, grow, and share their skills. They’ve been involved in major competitions such as the FIRST Tech Challenge, Seaperch (underwater rover), Bike to the Future (electric bike), and combat robotics. 

Currently, they also have personal projects that they’re working on; for example, they’re building a go-kart, a drone, and a spider robot. The club also hosts a summer camp, and in an effort to spark a passion for robotics in younger students, they also put on an afterschool class at the San Jose City College Extension in Milpitas. 

Next up on the horizon: Milpitas Xtreme Robotics plans to co-host a Hackathon in early April. In May, they’ll also be hosting an Intra-club Robotics Competition that is open to the public. They also hope to have a STEM day for the community, working in collaboration with Milpitas High STEM clubs. As well, the club offers occasional college-robotics-club tours, tech company tours, guest speakers, and workshops for members — and even students who aren’t currently members. 

“This year is the second year I have served as the President of Milpitas Xtreme Robotics, and it is painful to think that I will have to graduate and leave this club at the end of it,” said Wang. “MXR has changed my life in so many ways, helped me improve drastically as a person and leader, and helped me discover my passion for robotics and technology.” 

To learn more about Milpitas Xtreme Robotics, go here: 

tinyurl.com/xtremerobotics

 

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Rhoda Shapiro
Rhoda Shapiro works as a journalist and media consultant in the Bay Area. She has written for both the Tri-City Voice and the Mercury News, and is the founder of Chi Media Company, which works with nonprofit organizations to elevate their marketing and communication platforms. Rhoda is also an author; her first book will be published by Llewellyn Worldwide in mid-2019. Her YouTube channel, which features practices in yoga, meditation, and women’s empowerment, has amassed thousands of subscribers. Rhoda is The Milpitas Beat’s founder.

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