The Girard robotics team is getting ready to compete on the big stage this month. The team qualified for worlds — again. While that’s exciting, seniors have something else to look forward to, thanks to a generous mentor.
“We’ve made it all four years — to worlds — that I’ve been on the team,” Ryan Saverko said.
While you may think of robotics as a casual after-school club, the Robocats team is a lot more than that.
“We go pretty much year-round,” Ashraf Hadi said.
“It was like one big family,” Ellie Maurice said.
In the last couple of years, the team has gained a new member of the family who’s supporting them in a big way.
“Anyone who leaves Girard High as a Robocat and does something past that in education to improve themselves, they get a scholarship,” Ron Robinson said.
Robinson graduated from Girard High School in 1960. He started up a now billion-dollar company and decided to give back.
“Putting it into the high school kids is the best place to put it,” he said.
Robinson’s giving every senior on the robotics team a scholarship. This year, he raised his total to $120,000.
“You’re giving these kids opportunities that they wouldn’t even have otherwise,” Hadi said. “You know what I mean? Some kids don’t get out of Girard, Ohio, it’s as simple as that.”
For Robinson, it’s a simple gift.
“I want to. I can afford to,” he said.
For the Robocats, it’s a chance to pursue their dreams.
“I am going into mechanical engineering and I’m, at least, hoping to do some internships at some robotics facilities around the country,” Avery Tinkey said.
Robocats will compete at worlds on April 25.