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Tag : FIRST


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by   -   March 26, 2014

This photo essay documents the Girls of Steel as they built their newest robot for the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) division. Teams are given the parameters of the game and have just six weeks to build their robot.


by   -   February 28, 2014

Being a member of FIRST Team 3504, The Girls of Steel, has been an amazing experience: I have built robots with my teammates, gone to international competitions, and have had great time. We recently competed with our latest robot, E.V.E., and my friends and family have been asking “How does it work?”. This comic explains it all – I hope you enjoy it! (You can download a PDF of the full comic here.)


by , and   -   September 27, 2013

theresa_richards_arm

The Girls of Steel – a competitive FIRST team located in Pittsburg, PA – is on a mission to draw more young women into engineering. We’ve already heard what it’s like to be part of an all-girls robotics team, we now catch up with the team’s mentors, Theresa Richards and George Kantor, to hear about their roles in inspiring and mentoring the team. Here’s what they have to say …


by and   -   September 26, 2013

Lynn_Urbina2_FIRST

Girls of Steel at the 2013 FIRST Championships. Photo credit: Walt Urbina.

The Girls of Steel – a competitive FIRST team located in Pittsburg, PA – is on a mission to draw more young women into engineering. We asked team members Mackenzie Ferris (16), Sylvie Lee (16), Molly Urbina (15), Lynn Urbina (17), and Becca Volk (15) to give us the inside scoop of what it’s like to be part of an all-girls robotics team. Here’s what they have to say …


by   -   September 15, 2013

At the high school or middle school level there is no single best way for students to get a robotics education: there are many ways, and each way reaches the students differently. The easiest way is for students to join an established team: FIRST® Robotics (FLL, FTC, or FRC) teams, VEX robotics teams, BEST Robotics teams, and Botball teams. For a shorter-term experience, students can enroll in various summer camps at a local science center or other locations.  Finally, their teachers can offer to integrate commercially-available Hummingbird Robotics kits into the curriculum at multiple levels.

My educational robotics experience ranges from FRC- and FLL-level FIRST robotics teams to using the Hummingbird Robotics kits in the classroom and at summer camp.  For the past three years I have worked with the Girls of Steel FIRST Robotics team at Carnegie Mellon University as a high school faculty advisor/business mentor, and in each of the past two years my high school human anatomy students at The Ellis School used Hummingbird Robotics kits to create a robotic arm as a part of the unit on muscles. Most recently, my robot arm lab lesson was successfully adapted for middle school students in a C-MITES summer camp at CMU called “Anatomy and Robotics.”

theresa_richards_arm

The greater Pittsburgh area in Pennsylvania is a wonderful place to get a robotics education if you are a middle school or high school student.  Teachers here have access to workshops and professional development programs so they can be trained to bring robotics into the classroom using the Hummingbird Robotics kit or the LEGO Robotics kits. Students can enroll in summer camps to learn robotics at the Carnegie Science Center, Carnegie Mellon University, or Sarah Heinz House, and they can join FIRST or VEX community robotics teams at CMU (Girls of Steel) and Sarah Heinz House or the teams at their schools.

Read more answers →


by   -   June 8, 2013

In July, 2011, I interviewed and then wrote about an inspiring high school teacher who spearheaded the founding of the Dos Pueblos Engineering Academy, was the 2010 recipient of a $500,000 MacArthur Fellow award, and is the lead character in the book The New Cool by Neal Bascomb which tells the story of his high school’s winning entry in the 2008 F.I.R.S.T. robotics competition.


Below is a story about a similar science program and series of robotics competitions in a small town 40 miles north of Atlanta, Georgia. It is written by a high school junior, Brandon Gross, who asked to write about his and his fellow student enthusiasts and their program.


by   -   April 11, 2013

I’m always surprised when I come to Stanford. I find new companies setting up shop in the area. Ford’s new research lab wasn’t there the last time I drove by, for example.

Later, when walking around Palo Alto and in a restaurant I could hear snippets of conversation that were different than most other college towns. Bio med devices, hardware, software, VCs, appointments with funders, crowd funders, etc. nothing about love, philosophy, literature.


by and   -   March 8, 2013

LynnUrbinaA high school student by day and a power-tool-toting Maker by night, Lynn Urbina is a member of the Girls of Steel – an all-girl competitive robotics team located in Pittsburg, PA that’s on a mission to draw young women into engineering.