Team Duct Tape was honored to be selected to represent FIRST Tech Challenge at this week’s Elliott Masie Learning 2011 Conference in Orlando. TDT students joined Exploding Bacon’s FRC team and FLL Team Party Boss in a fantastic day that included an opportunity to meet with FIRST founder Dean Kamen, in the morning, along with FIRST Vice Chairman John Abele (who received the Masie Learning Center’s Lifetime Learner Award) and FIRST president Jon Dudas.
Later, all the FIRST students went on stage with Dean and Elliott Masie to talk a bit about FIRST and to see FIRST awarded a $25,000 Learning Gives Back Grant from Masie Learning. And then the rest of the day was spent sharing FIRST with conference attendees, and enjoying some of the fantastic sessions. We stayed long enough to enjoy a storytelling session with actor John Lithgow, too, which was the icing on the cake of a really amazing day!
Tonight some of our students head out to the ASME-Florida West Coast Section November meeting,in Dunedin, to join up with FRC Team Thundercats to talk about this season’s challenge and FIRST in general. We’re really looking forward to it!
That and eventually getting our robot done!
From PC Magazine:
The special pairs robotics legend Dean Kamen—who also founded FIRST, an organization devoted to pushing kids to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields of research—with Will.i.am, supposedly still Intel’s director of creative innovation and a robotics builder in his own right.
The back-to-school special was filmed during the FIRST Championship 2011 so it has a handy 30,000 extras in the form of students, fans, families, educators, and industry leaders who gathered in St. Louis, MO for the Championship in April. Set the Tivo and check it out ! Better yet, grab your team mates and make a night of it!
Dean Kamen writes, in the Huffington Post, “Two decades ago, I founded FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a program that encouraged students to pursue careers in science and technology through robotics competitions. At that time, not many people believed that we could combine science education with the excitement of competitive sports. The thrill of victory, the agony of defeat, and … robots? Many thought it was impossible. However, 20 years after our first Championship in a high school gym in Manchester, New Hampshire, FIRST has grown into an international phenomenon. Tens of thousands will participate this year. Hundreds of thousands are alumni who currently fill the ranks of some of the best technology and engineering corporations, or have gone on to create their own innovative businesses. FIRST continues to grow, and continues to inspire.”
Read the complete article at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dean-kamen/robotics-and-athletics_b_839294.html