The Owatonna AAUW is hosting a meeting that features the Owatonna High School robotics team Tuesday, January 24, at 7PM at the high school.

The AAUW welcomes curious citizens and potential team members to the event. Refreshments begin at 6:30PM.

The OHS robotics team, which goes by the name Rebel Alliance, has been around for only three years, but has made a regular trip to the Minnesota State High School League competition each year. The Owatonna Magnet student news website reports that the season officially began January 9 with nearly 40 students on the team. Students are divided into the electrical, design and build, programming or public relations group.

The Rebel Alliance gets tremendous support from a variety of Owatonna businesses and service organizations in the way of funding and mentoring. The team gets six weeks to construct their robot and will then participate in competitions with the goal of qualifying for the state event. Val Rose is their coach.

A unique aspect of robotics is that competitions involve several schools working together as an alliance to outscore other alliances. Previous years have required students to build robots that can navigate around obstacles, pick up balls, throw balls and stack objects. In light of Tuesday's forecast, a robot that shovels snow might be desirable.

Roy Koenig, Townsquare Media