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What is Robotics
What is Robotics?


At Watertown-Mayer High School, the Robotics team participates in the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC). Combining the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and technology, FRC is the ultimate Sport for the Mind. High school student participants call it "the hardest fun you'll ever have."

Each season, under strict rules and limited time and resources, teams of students are challenged to raise funds, design a team "brand", hone teamwork skills, and build and program industrial-size robots to play a difficult field game against like-minded competitors. It's as close to real-world engineering as a student can get. Volunteer professional mentors lend their time and talents to guide each team. Each season ends with exciting FIRST Regional Competitions, where teams from across different US regions compete to win awards and ultimately qualify to go to the FIRST World Championship held in Detroit, Michigan or Houston, Texas.

What if I don’t know anything about robots?


The really cool thing about FRC is… all skill levels are welcomed and needed, technical or non-technical. Teams need all kinds of skills to succeed, so what are you good at? We have a job for you. And we’ll probably teach you a few new ones while you’re with us. That means that no matter how good at science and engineering you are, or perhaps your interests lie in business and marketing skills, there is something for you to do and learn. Our team consists of students who are either interested in or are currently doing tasks in the following fields:

  • Accounting

  • Photography/videography

  • Video editing

  • Social Media

  • Engineering

  • Programming

  • Real time strategy analysis

  • Art design

  • Writing

  • Video Gaming

  • Public Speaking

  • Project management

  • Entrepreneurship

  • Electrical work

  • Fundraising

  • And more...

What is the time commitment like?


In general, the Robotics season operates during the school year, but robotics is an all year round activity with more active times of the year and less active times. Teams form and register in the fall; however, the “official season” begins early in January when the season’s Challenge is announced at a kick-off ceremony. Teams must then create their robot in order to be ready for their competition events. You should be meeting with your team at least several times per week during the build and competition season (January – April). Many mature teams also meet throughout the school year, and some compete in off-season events during the summer and fall. Like any sport or other after-school activity, the more time you invest, the better you will become at your task(s). During the build season, the pressure is on, so be prepared to also spend some nights and weekends helping your team. District and Regional competition events start in late February and continue through April. Teams that qualify are invited to the FIRST Championship at the end of April. There are also many off-season events in which teams can participate, strategize, hone their skills, learn new technology, meet other teams, and have fun!

Is it possible to do Robotics and other after school activities/sports?


The answer to this question is complicated and depends on your time management skills, organization, determination, and mental/emotional health. From past experience, it is not a good idea to be involved in Robotics and other activities that would not allow you to be at Robotics practice 2 or 3 times a week during the build season (January – April). Activities that often conflict with robotics are:

  • Speech

  • Knowledge Bowl

  • BPA

  • Wrestling

  • Basketball

  • Mock Trial

  • Boys Swimming

Again, this does not mean that you cannot do these activities at the same time as Robotics, but ultimately you will be spreading yourself very thin between all of these. The Robotics team requires a pretty large time commitment (primarily during the build season January - April). If you are not able to give the team the amount of time necessary to complete your task(s), you may hinder the team's success.

Is it possible to do Robotics if I have a job after school?


Again, the answer to this question is “it depends”. Practice times for Robotics are usually 3 times during the week and Saturdays (during the build season January – April). If you have a job that allows you to have a flexible schedule, or can change your schedule to be at practice 2-3 times a week, then yes, it is possible to do Robotics and have a job. If your job however doesn’t allow you to adjust your schedule and be available to Robotics practice other than maybe 1 time a week, then no, you should not consider joining the Robotics team. Ultimately, the skills and tools that you will learn from doing Robotics are worth more than a part time job. These skills and tools will prepare you for a real career in many different fields after you have graduated high school, so think of Robotics as an “investment in yourself” that will pay off in the future.

How much does it cost to do robotics?


There are costs involved with joining a FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) team and they can vary from team to team and region to region depending on what level of participation the team chooses. Here are some basic cost parameters:

  • Paying the school’s activity fee (this may change in the future, but it is currently $80).

  • Paying for food at off-season events and regional competition (this can be reduced by bringing your own food, but for the entire season the cost of food may be approx. $100 depending on multiple factors).

  • Paying for lodging and transportation to regional competition or FIRST World Championship (this cost can range from $80-$120 per student. It also can be more or less depending on if the team does a regional competition that requires hotel rooms or if the team stays local such as Minneapolis).

We believe that no student that wants to participate should have to bow out due to lack of resources. We will do everything possible to make funds available to all students who need extra help.

How do I sign up for Robotics?


There are two steps to joining the Robotics team. The first step is registering through Watertown-Mayer High School’s online registration system for sports and activities.

What if I don't know anythin about robots?
Time commitment
Other activities/sports
After School Job
How to sign up



The second step is registering to the team through FIRST Inspires. Your parents (or yourself if you are 18 years old) will need to register through the FIRST Inspires organization for you to be able to participate in competitions. Click the button below to visit the FIRST Inspires website. At the top of the page, click either "Register" for new students, or "Login" for returning students, to register to the team.


WMHS’s Robotics team number and name:

  • Team Number: 7530

  • Team Name: Brotherhood of Steel

  • School Affiliation: Watertown-Mayer High School

  • Location: Watertown, MN



Once these tasks have been completed, congratulations! You are officially on the team! We will work on getting you some team apparel and teaching you about all of the different tasks and responsibilities that you may be interested in.


BOS Robotics Logo.png
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