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Kingsley Engineering Academy Seniors Take Home Silver at National Robotics Challenge

Lily, far right, and Jeremiah, far left, pose at the competition alongside their Engineering Academy teammates.

Two Kingsley High School students took home awards at the National Robotics Challenge World Championship in Marion, Ohio, April 7-9, 2022.

Seniors Jeremiah Forro and Lily Kolbusz took home the Silver Award and were Honda Innovation Award nominees in the Manufacturing Workcell Competition

Their task was to create a workcell that could solve a real world problem.

"Our team is called 'The Greenhouse Effect' and we created an autonomous greenhouse that can care for and harvest plants on its own while conserving water," said Lily.

Their robot featured an environmentally-controlled chamber equipped with misters, drip irrigation, fans to regulate humidity, and an arm to harvest the crop when it finished growing.

Lily and Jeremiah competed with other students from the Engineering Academy at the Northwest Ed Career Tech Center as part of their capstone project. The two-year program allows students to earn up to 8.5 academic and elective credits and includes engineering classes like 3D printing, basic construction and machining, computer-aided design, electrical, pneumatic systems, and statistics.

The program has won state and national awards and has attracted attention and praise from many institutions, including Michigan Tech. They created a scholarship specifically for Engineering Academy students.

"Our alumni always tell us how that when they get to engineering school in college, they end up lead all the projects because they have so much experience," said Tim Wheatley, an instructor at the Engineering Academy.

Engineering Academy students take the stage to receive their awards at the National Robotics Challenge.

Interested in the Engineering Academy? Learn more at the next Student/Parent information session at 6PM on Wednesday April 27 at the Career Tech Facility, 880 Parsons, Traverse City 49686, or visit

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