It was all hands in on December 10, when McEachern’s First Robotics Team went to Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park to help maintain less than a mile of the 20+ miles of trail at this remarkable landmark. Even with events such as ACT testing a special McEachern Program, Shop With An Indian and last minute Christmas shopping, seventeen students, 3 team mentor, and a parent managed to come out and help give back to the community.
Even the Superintendent of the park, Nancy Walther, came out sporting the team’s community project. First, the team had to walk a mile to get to the actual trail that they were going to repair, then they had to dig buckets and buckets of dirt and then transport it to another part of the trail to build up a switch back which makes it easier and safer for hikers to walk downhill. Thankfully, they were not alone, trained crew leaders are always there to lead volunteers on trail work projects throughout the park.
You would think that if students had to give up their Saturday afternoon, you wouldn’t have too many happy campers, but Paul Eubanks, the robotics team teacher, said otherwise, “Even though the work was very tedious, everyone was enjoying themselves and laughing the whole time. It was great to see kids being happy about doing hard work and this is exactly the kind of attitude I’m excited to see once the competition starts.”
Freshman Julian Mory and sophomore Darrius Porter also had nothing but kind words to say about volunteering. “Not only was Saturday fun, but it really made me appreciate nature,” said Mory. Darrius said, “It was a great opportunity to get away from the TV and meet the people who I’m going to be working with for the next couple months; and everyone was so nice. All the seniors were completely different from what I expected. Instead of being the stereotypical “bossy” seniors, they were trying to get all the underclassmen eager for the competition by telling us about all the past competitions, and it worked! I can’t wait for January.” So, after four hours of blood, sweat and tears (from laughter), the team is not only becoming less of working unit and more of a family, but ready for what is next to come.