Faith purchases telepresence robot


Photo courtesy of Tom Chalfant

Director of computer services Mr. Tom Chalfant stands with a student looking at Faiths CEO Dr.Buuck who was using the Beam while in China to see Faith.

Jax Lewis, Staff Writer

“Teachers or students talking to the people on the Beam device almost forget that they’re even talking to someone through it because its almost exactly like a face to face conversation” said the Faith Lutheran

Director of Computer Services Mr. Tom Chalfant. Faith Lutheran recently purchased a telepresence robot or Beam device which is a two wheel robot that people can see out of from a computer screen.

Almost every student knows what Face time or Skype is, but a telepresence robot, such as the Beam, brings those two things to life.

According to, a Beam robot is a motorized stand with two wheels at the bottom and a screen (about the size of an iPad) at the top. The robot, which cost 2,000 dollars, comes standard with a ten inch screen screen and two hours of call time. It has built-in cameras and a four microphone array, all with high quality sound. The robot connects to wifi and charges on a power dock.

Faith Lutheran purchased the Beam shortly after the school year started.
All across the world people are using this new device. Beam can help people from offices to villages to schools like Faith. Faith has not yet started using the device, as it’s fairly new.

According to Chalfant, families that live out of state or in different countries that would like to experience Faith Lutheran can use the beam. Students that are maybe terminally ill or are very sick and need to stay at home, but would still like to go to Faith Lutheran can also find use in the robot.

Students here at Faith Lutheran are not quite sure what the robot even is or does, they’ve just seen it in the library or hallway.
“One time I saw it in the hallway, but I had no clue what it was. It looked pretty amazing though,” said seventh grade student Conner Paquette. Other students think that it could have lots of benefits.
“The device is very smart, I think it could help further other kids education,” said seventh grade student Tyler Munding. The Beam could’ve actually been used before the school bought it.

“It could have been used before, absolutely,” said Chalfant. In fact, the telepresence robot could be used very soon,
“Dr. Buuck (Faith’s CEO) is actually in China right now talking to a group of kids that might want to come to Faith. The beam could give them a tour of the Faith.” Said Chalfant.
“Once we test it out to ensure there is no drops in the network around the school, it could be used very soon.”

To see a PDF version of this story, please click the link provided. Beam story final PDF