Team RUSH shows students the joys of STEM with summer programming

By Wendi Reardon Price
Staff Writer
— Clarkston High School’s Team RUSH 27 Robotics showed young students in the community STEM is fun through five camps this summer.
The newest camp added this summer was RUSH Drone Camp for those entering grades 5-9.
“It is really awesome,” said Finn Berard, a senior on Team RUSH 27, before the camp began. “It’s kind of modeled after the FRC aerial drone competition. We are using their field, their materials. Kids learn what are drones, how are they influencing technology, how are they being used. They learn how to fly drones, how to program drones. It’s going to be really cool. I am really excited about it.”
Back this year was RUSHing Girls to Engineering, which junior Ameera Abdellateef shared had more attending than in 2023.
“They are all having fun,” she said, added they did coding, programming and had a stamp project.
For the stamp project, the campers used the TinkerCAD program, the campers made a stamp handle which they printed on the 3D printer. Then, they made a design for their stamp with Adobe Illustrator.
“It’s really important to get girls young girls and STEM early on in a dominated field,” Abdellateef said. “Hopefully they are inspired to continue. A lot of the girls want to do this camp next year.”
Other camps offered were RUSH Junior Robotics & VEX123, for those entering grades 1-3; and RUSH Lego Robotics, for grades 3-5; RUSH 3D Modeling with TinkerCAD for beginners and advanced, for grades 5-9.
Berard shared the RUSH Lego Robotics is modeled after the FIRST Lego League Challenge.
“It follows the same curriculum we have done year after year to make it our own and get the students involved,” he said. “Tinker CAD we adjusted the curriculum this year so they are working with learning how to do 3D models, how to 3D print, and how to go from conception of an idea to trying to formulate to have some kind of end product.”
The RUSH Junior Robotics and VEX123 was themed around last year’s FLL season.
“We are shifting over to prepare them for the actual Explore program in the fall a bit more than the past,” Berard said. “Now we are using the same kits. It is themed around last year’s season. They go through a lot of core concepts for engineering, for designing, building, working together is huge. It’s identifying the teamwork aspect, learning how to communicate and work with different people and meet new people.”
He shared it’s awesome to see so many kids interested in RUSH camps.
“We have a good group of kids in our camps,” he said. “They are super energetic when they get in. It was the first day and one kid when he was leaving said ‘this was the best day of my life.’ It was just so awesome to see all these kids coming in and get super interested in STEM and FIRST, robotics and everything we are doing. We are doing a really big push, and we started last year and continuing this year, to really gearing out to our community and making sure we are doing everything we can to spread STEM.
“It’s awesome with these camps and the fall, too, seeing all these kids come in. When you have kids who are interested in what they are doing and they are having fun. They are here and they want to be here, it makes it fun for us and everybody else.”
All camps are led by Team RUSH 27 students and offered through Clarkston Community Education. For more information on the robotics team, please visit

Kids in camps led by Team RUSH 27 smile after four days of fun and learning. They also enjoyed seeing Team RUSH’s robot in action and saw the field the team practices in during competition season. Photo: Provided by Kyle Hughes

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