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UPDATE: Future of FMCSD robotics program in good hands

Last Updated Mar 6, 2023 at 9:23 am MST

FMCSD robotics students and coaches of Father Mercredi High School celebrate after winning a robotics event in Calgary, Alta., and qualify for the VEX World Championships in Dallas, TX. Photo supplied by FMCSD/Father Mercredi High School Media Team.

Robotics students from the Fort McMurray Catholic School Division (FMCSD) are on their way to worlds.

Four teams from Father Mercredi High School attended Mecha Mayhem: Canada’s first VEX Robotics Signature Event in Calgary, Alta., on Feb. 3-5, 2023.

All four made the playoff round, including Team 5760B which finished the event with an undefeated 10-0 record, and qualified for the VEX World Championships in Dallas, Texas.

FMCSD teacher and head robotics coach Tom MacIsaac called it a weekend to remember.

“This event was Canada’s first Signature Robotics Event and our teams left their mark on the robotics world with a tournament win and a resulting trip to Worlds in Texas. Success begets success, this weekend has added another layer to a Father Mercredi High School program that has been built on student success.”

Mecha Mayhem featured over 100 middle and high school teams from across North America.

Fellow coach Holly Kalma added this accomplishment rewards the students’ dedication.

“They eat, sleep, and breathe robotics. They continually share their passion for robotics while showing great sportsmanship. Having a team qualify for Worlds is a testament to them all.”

Father Mercredi’s Media Team also attended Mecha Mayhem, and captured the event as it happened.

Coach Tamarra Price Chambrinho said it was a wonderful experience.

“We are honoured to have the work of our Media Team recognized and utilized at this level. To be invited to an event of this scale to share our work with over 100 teams and sponsors is an incredible real world experience and learning opportunity for our students.”

Marching on together

Father Mercredi robotics students in six teams competed once again at a provincial tournament from Mar. 3-5, 2023.

Team 5760C finished the qualifying rounds undefeated, ranked number 2 in the competition.

Members of Team 5760C “Cobra Chickenz”: Julian Chambrinho (grade 12), Marc Durieu (grade 12), Ashton Oster (grade 11), and Alex Brady (grade 10). Photo supplied by FMCSD.


Otherwise known as “Cobra Chickenz”, 5760C is ranked 4th according to Alberta Skills, while 5760B “UnBEARable” is ranked third.

FMCSD coach Carson Creighton couldn’t contain his joy.

“I’m so proud of all of the teams. From seeing how great the future of our program looks with the success of our middle school teams, to seeing another team qualify for Worlds, the future of the program is in great hands.”

Creighton said all six high school teams performed well into the playoff rounds, including Team 5760H.

Members of Father Mercredi High school Team 5760H, which received the Judges Award at a provincial competition in March 3-5, 2023. Photo supplied by FMCSD.


That team received the middle school Judges Award for overall performance, engineering notebook, and their interview process.

The VEX World Championships in Dallas will be held in late April.