Huntsville’s ‘Nerdettes’ robotics team featured on Today Show

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The Nerdettes are an all-girls community Tech Challenge Team from Huntsville. (nerdetteshsv.com)

There are a number of interests that can bring a group of people together — whether it be a sport, a certain kind of music, a love of the outdoors, etc — but one unique group of young women from Huntsville found a common passion for robotics, and the Nerdettes robotics team was born.

The Nerdettes were the only robotics team that qualified to represent the state of Alabama at the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Tech Challenge World Championship in Houston in April of 2022, and were recently featured on the Today Show. Get to know these amazing young women:

The Nerdettes’ History

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The team consists of girls from Huntsville and Owens Crossings. (nerdetteshsv.com)

The Nerdettes were formed in 2015 when several of the team’s members were competing on boys’ teams and decided to break away and form an all-girls middle school robotics team. And history was made!

“I didn’t really like robotics at first because being on a co-ed team, the boys didn’t really want the girls doing robotics, they wanted us to make posters.”

Emily King, team member

The Nerdettes current team members include:

  • Emily King
  • Ellen Vegerita
  • Sydney MacMurray
  • Hailey Holsonback
  • Megan Quinn
  • Lily Sullivan

Last spring, the team qualified to compete against 160 other teams across the world at the FIRST Tech Robotics National Championship in Houston. The FIRST Tech Challenge is a robotics competition for middle school and high school students that allows teams to compete head-to-head in challenges with alliances.

They were the only team from Alabama to make the FIRST Tech Challenge, and the team recently captured first place at a competition in Tennessee.

Since the team was formed, they have racked up numerous awards, including:

Connect Award 1st place – 2021-2022 TN State Championship
Connect Award 1st Place – 2021-2022 AR State Championship
Inspire Award 2nd Place – 2021-2022 AR State Championship – Advancement to World
Inspire Award 3rd Place – 2021-022 AL State Championship
Connect Award 3rd place – 2021-2022 AL State Championship
Innovate Award 2nd Place – 2021-2022 AL State Championship
Compass Award 2nd Place – 2021-2022 AL State Championship – Erick Holsonback
Deans List Finalist – 2021-2022 AL State Championship – Emily King

Getting national attention

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The girls were featured on the Today Show Thursday, Jan. 12. (nerdetteshsv.com)

The Today Show last week featured the Nerdettes and what they have accomplished, with Today’s Dylan Dreyer interviewing Emily King and Megan Quinn on Thursday morning’s show.

Check out the interview here:

Learn more about the Nerdettes and how you can help them maintain their success and their mission in the future by visiting the team’s website.

Keep up with what’s happening in and around Huntsville by following Hville Blast on  FacebookTikTok and Instagram, and by subscribing to our newsletter!

Michael Seale
Michael Seale
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