John Burroughs Bombers competes in robotics championship

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ST. LOUIS (KPLR) - Competitors from around the globe are gathering for the last time in St. Louis this week for the First Tech Challenge World Championships.

John Burroughs School from Ladue is the only local team to make it through the regionals to the big meet.  They're going to have nine matches over the next three days and they're really hoping to make it to the finals with Sharpie Bot 2.0.

It took the John Burroughs Bombers more than 400 hours to build. The students are in grade 7 through 12.

On student explains, "For our ball transfer we have a conveyer belt mechanism that brings the balls up the robot."

Sharpie is designed to be a sharp shooter to help the team gain points by making baskets.

Another continues, "So it actually comes up cradling the ball and the way we score is a like a reverse slam dunk."

But before they can get into the pit the kids need to present Sharpie to the judges.

Senior Ben Stegeman says it's good practice since he wants to go into marketing.

"Give like an overview for everybody to understand because you may know how it works, but you also need to let everyone else know," he says.

Director of First Tech Challenge Ken Johnson says that's just one of the many skills organizers hope to foster with this competition.

"These kids are going to change our world. These kids are the future. What our mission is  to inspire them to go on to do great things," he explains.

For Hannah Stroup that was learning to code and work as a team.

She's proud to show Sharpie off to the 30,000-people expected to check out the competition this week.

"I mean this is the world championships so we're hoping to win but that's not the most important thing. the most important thing is having fun and the journey there," she says.

The Bombers are in the Edison Division and the finals start on Saturday at 10:45 am.