Robotics Fanatic / Northridge sophomore completes week-long camp at Westminster College

Aug 2 2009 - 11:25pm

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(NICHOLAS DRANEY/Standard-Examiner) Zach Janroy poses for a portrait at his home in Layton.
(NICHOLAS DRANEY/Standard-Examiner) Zach Janroy poses for a portrait at his home in Layton.

LAYTON -- If a movie has a robot in it, you can count on Zachary Janroy to be there.

The soon-to-be Northridge High School sophomore has always had an interest in robotics and plans to make a career in the field.

"Robotics ... is the advancement of our ability to create something and to use it to benefit mankind," Janroy said. "My interest was really sparked by any movie that had some kind of robot. I would wonder, was it possible to build a robot that could react on its own, that could go beyond its programming?"

Janroy recently returned from Westminster College's weeklong robotics camp, where he participated in hands-on activities such as building his own robot and programming it to go through obstacle courses.

"I liked the counselors, mostly because they were helpful and knew what they were doing," he said. "I wanted to experience the field of robotics firsthand and see what it was like to build and program a robot. The challenge was to build and program a robot to go through different obstacle courses. On the first one, it was a time trial, and me and my partner got fourth place."

Robotics are widely used around the world in fields such as medicine, engineering, space, industry and the military.

Krista DeAngelis, associate director of communications at Westminster College, said fewer and fewer students are going into technical fields. The camps are held to educate and encourage kids to look into those fields a little more.

Janroy was born to Brian and Rhonda Janroy on Bitburg Air Base in Germany and raised there until the age of 4. He then moved with his family to Turkey for another three years before moving to Layton. He has a brother, Jonathan, and two dogs, Sally and Dolce. He works at Lagoon, is good at math, likes to play the guitar, baseball, video games and golf and is wary of bees, spiders and snakes.

Janroy plans to attend Westminster College, where he will focus on being a robotics programmer or designer.

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