This week, we are highlighting the work of one Medford student who has changed how his teacher instructs.
Seventeen-year-old Hunter Raymond, a student at Medford Vocational Technical High school, invented the Richbot 3000 to help his teacher who was battling cancer.
“I know he likes teaching and he always tells us, so when he wasn’t able to teach I know how much it affected him,” Raymond said.
The robot is named for Richard Cormio, who was forced to take a leave of absence after receiving a stem cell transplant.
Cormio had to be quarantined for a year, but that wasn’t going to stop him from being in the classroom.
“We started with Skype,” he said. “Because of the setup of the room and the sun I couldn’t really see too much, I was only getting glare. Students were asking questions but I didn’t know who was asking them or anything.”
That’s when Hunter created the Richbot 3000
“The next thing you know they said, ‘We have a way for you to look left and right,’” Cormio said. “It was thrilling for me to be home and be able to maneuver that thing all around. It was just a tremendous feeling, almost like a freedom.”
“Every time I would do something, like put wheels on it, make it so he could control it, it made me want to keep going and adding stuff,” Raymond said.
Raymond said creating the robot also changed his life.
“It made me so happy,” he said. “It was the best feeling to see it actually work. Every time I hit a wall I couldn’t keep moving with the robot I would just think to myself, ‘This is what it’s for.’ It would just keep making me want to progress.”
Cormio said he is proud of Hunter.
“He really went above and beyond and just created something wonderful,” Cormio said.
Hunter has applied to several local colleges and plans to study robotics.