Wenger leads Robotics as captain

Sacrifices time, other activities to compete

Faye Smith

More stories from Faye Smith



Senior Abby Wenger works on printing the RailerRobotics logo on promotional material.

Katherine Lindgren and Ben Crump

Time and dedication is what makes a captain. Senior Abby Wenger’s commitment to the robotics team as a captain, forced her to pick between two activities she enjoyed.

“It was kind of hard to juggle both robotics and cheer because the both of them take up so much time. But then I kind of had to choose because I liked robotics more. I made the decision to not cheer my senior year a few days before tryouts. It was a hard decision at first, but I’m glad what I chose now because robotics takes up an enormous amount of time,” Wenger said.

Although the decision was recent, Wenger has spent the year preparing for the responsibilities of her position with help from alumnus Aaron Carrillo.

The RaileRobotics team poses for a photograph at the regional competition. The team won the competition, qualifying them to attend the national championships in April.

“I learned a lot from the former captain last year Aaron Carrillo, we became friends through robotics and I learned a lot about leading. He pretty much taught me the ins and outs of being captain,” Wenger said. “Since freshman year the team structure has changed a little, we no longer have freshman subgroup captains and senior mentors, we now just have upperclassmen or experienced subgroup captains so to answer the question, no I am not a mentor but I will come back from college during breaks and help mentor.”

Teammates of Wenger believed that she would be an adequate leader for this season and team. Wenger shows essential leadership qualities including positivity and charisma.

“Well she seemed like she would be a good female lead this year. We also wanted to switch it up this year and have a female leader,” Million said. “She devotes a lot of time to it and she takes it very seriously.”

Their results are a reflection of the long hours spent working on and developing their robot. Wenger and teammates devote weekends and weekdays towards robotics amounting to countless hours of their time.

“During build season we spend 27 hours a week at the high school working on the robot, from 3:30-7:30 after school every day, and on Saturdays from 8am-3pm,” Wenger said. “When it’s not build season we meet weekly on Wednesdays for about an hour.”

Going into competition season Wenger felt that her gender would not have any negative impact on their progress or competition results.

“There’s a lot of teams that girls lead. It’s not much different than a guy leading the team. It’s not looked down upon when a girl leads the team because in robotics that happens a lot,” Wenger said.

The robotics team went on to win their first regional competition of the year on March 4th in Lubbock, Tex. This competition qualified them for nationals.