corona high school

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“Robots, something one would believe would be the future; the future with human race on top of the world. Doesn’t it sound very promising? The truth is, future is not a goal, and it’s a mere result; the result of our contributions and accomplishments.  The more we accomplish, the clearer future gets.”

These are the words of the founder of Robotics club, Mr. Johnson.  With a degree in mathematics and a desire to improve education, Mr. Johnson founded the Vex Robotics club in 2013. The Vex Robotics Competition is organized by Vex for High School students to provide their own solution to a problem faced to them by building a hands-free robot.  Last year, the goal was to carry plastic balls from a tray and stack it on a high elevation. Their solution was a 4-bar lift that could carry multiple props at the same time and also drive fast with the limited amount of parts. The school won the state’s championships and ended up winning 3rd spot. This goal showed him, as he states, “the bright light that all students need to see.”

With his experience, Mr. Johnson strove to provide all of the students at Corona High a hands-on experience to set forward goals and actually get to design, build ,and program simultaneously.  Therefore, he decided to dedicate one more year of staying at school until 6 o’clock and encouraging students to become confident with their goals. Currently, he runs a Programming Club, where the primary goal is to teach students how to program, and the Robotics Club, where the primary goal is to design and construct different machines.

Raheem Latif, the leader of the club, describes that the club has taught him the “realistic way”, the way he claims that he could have never imagined, “the place outside of theories and design; a place with gravity, fiction, probability, central balance, elevation, and much more. A realistic place where time is one of the factors and calculating every one of the factors is next to impossible and trial-and-error is the only solution there is.” He believes that, “all students should join the club to think outside the box and interpret ideas in their own way and make originality.”

He continued, “When I first joined, the first thing I had tried was making a claw and as soon as it failed working, I had given up all hopes on it. However, as time passed by with experience filling up, my mind accepts failure as just another stop to success. Although that may have sounded a part of the most classic inspiration speech,  there are no other words to put one of the most magical, yet realistic club.”

Robotic’s club meets on Tuesdays, in room J7 at 3:00 pm.

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“Project Lead the Way” is a 4 year program that pushes incoming freshmen to commit to the future and make innovative decisions and encourages students to advance in technology and free-thinking. About 75% of all projects are cooperative, and the majority is computer based leaving the design challenges to be 3 dimensional (such as working on a fling machine where students are given random materials such as a deflated balloon, rubber bands, paper, and a straw so as to fling an object the furthest when an arm is let go).
Stand-by computers allow students to render out and cerate 3D designs on projects like CAD and CAM. There is a 3-week safety course that focuses on technology and how to teach them problem-solving skills.

This program takes their design with tool paths in Mastercam and to machine the part on a router and mill. Students have created door lock knobs, gearshift knobs, and racing petals with the machines provided. The finished products from the students often look professional and give a “fresh off the shelf” feeling such as one student who made a 34” long-board that was shaped and accented to look like a fish skeleton. Such projects have been designed in AutoCAD and brought into Mastercam where it can be looked at with combined 2D and 3D operations.

The first year of the program for freshmen is “Introduction to Engineering” where they are introduced to what engineering is and what fields are available in careers. It also is a way for them to learn the basic math, physics, and chemistry of manufacturing as well as instant design challenges coupled with research and principles of engineering.

The sophomores of the program get to enroll in a program called the “Principles of Engineering” in where they learn more about physically building contraptions for a purpose (ex. Marble solder, stoplights and trigger). This class will also teach them an introduction to robotics and electronics.

Juniors get to enroll into “Computer Integrated Manufacturing” where they take their newfound skills and learn how to design and manufacture products using CNC, Lathes, Routers, and 3D printers as well as Laser Engravers.

The seniors then get to enter “Engineering Design and Development.” The senior project given is of a real-world problem to solve and create a working physical model of the product that is then judged by a panel of engineers from an industry.

Already over 200 patents have come from the “Project Lead the Way” program.

Next year, corona High will be among several schools in CA to receive an i3 (Investing in Innovation Fund) grant to provide more companies and machinery needed to create an expanded engineering program. Students in the class(es) can explore a career in manufacturing quickly even in Norco Community College. On that note, Mr. Lee’s Design Manufacturing Technology Course can give up to 3 college credits.