We always try to connect with other FTC teams or anyone interested in FIRST or FTC in any way possible. Checkout some of the ways we're able to communicate with the public below!
This event actually took several months to plan. We started with contacting sponsors, and received support from many local companies like JustinMind, Google, Wolfram Alpha etc. These companies were able to offer either monetary support, hardware, or judging prizes. Informatica, located in Redwood city, was even able to offer us a venue to host this overnight event. In total, the budget was approximately 12k, and Stream Education Was our non-profit fiscal sponsor. In addition, we set up an ambassador program to reach out to local high schools to attract attendees. Our main target was students that had little to no experience with computer science. Many of our ambassador leaders were also on robotics teams, and students came from local schools like Aragon, San Mateo, Design Tech, to farther schools like Mission San Jose, Gunn High, and Los Altos High. We wanted a diverse range of students from many different schools.
Prateek, Timon, Sethmi and Pranav presented about our team to the CEO of Synnex Corporation, Kevin Murai. They talked about the team’s founding and our experience making it to the World Championship last year. We also created our own business plan and budget to propose in hopes of acquiring a sponsorship.
Prateek had the opportunity to teach at the Lego Robotics summer camp this past summer. He spent several weeks teaching elementary school students about robotics. He taught children basic programming concepts with block based coding. These programming fundamentals are vital for FTC robotics, and he exposed the kids to what FTC programming is like. Although in FTC we use object-oriented programming, teaching the students block based programming is an effective way for kids to understand programming from a young age. Hopefully they will pick up this programming knowledge and eventually write code for FTC!
Our first workshop consisted of a brief introduction and history of our team. At the beginning of every workshop, we gave the kids a mini-lesson via powerpoint presentations. We would hold icebreakers, show them educational videos, and teach them about basic design and physics concepts. This lasted for about 15 minutes to half an hour. After the mini-lesson, the kids had an opportunity to apply what they learned through a design lab in groups of 4 or 5. In these design labs, we gave them an engineering task that modeled real-world developments.
We gave an introduction about our team and talked about our past 2015-2016 season. We described the commitment, dedication and work ethic needed to be on Vulcan Robotics. We introduced what the First Tech Challenge was to parents and students that attended, stressing the important principles that included gracious professionalism, managing finances, game challenge rules, outreach, and robot design. Lastly, we passed out flyers to interested students and talked about the application process for applying to Vulcan.
Timon and Prateek drove the robot during matches and Anna was robocoach. We used the robot the from Worlds and focused on scoring cubes and getting the robot to hang. Timon and Prateek gained experience driving and this was a good opportunity to practice, especially for next season as five seniors will graduate. We talked to kids at the booth and passed out flyers for interested students that wanted to join our team for the 2016-2017 season. There were a lot of people that came to watch, and while not competing, we spent time talking to students about Vulcan Robotics and our FTC experiences.
We were featured in the local school newspaper from Aragon High School. The newspaper article is shown below:
We brought our robot to the PG&E conference center to present at the reception with other local teams that qualified for the World Championships in St. Louis. Teams that were present included local FTC teams Voltage of Imagination and RoboKnights. Local FLL teams present included the TacoBots, We love Pi, and TechMagic. Members of Vulcan spoke with local FLL teams and PG&E employees about their experiences with the FIRST Tech Challenge, season challenges, highlights, results and reflections from Worlds. Concluding the event, each team received a sponsorship check of $2000. Vulcan Robotics and Roboknights proceeded to showcase their robots to PG&E employees, parents, and students.
San Mateo Main Library - 7/11/15
On July 11 and 18,we hosted a smiliar workshop at the the San Mateo Main Library. Many young middle and elementary school students came to do interactive experiments such as rocket designing and other engineering experiments. On a side note, the egg drop we did resulted in egg yolk all over some of our team members.
From July 6-9, our team collaborated with the Foster City Library to teach a 4 day camp about robotics. The camp was meant for middle school students and we were able to expose the different aspects of robotics using small experiments. In this program, they had hands on hand experience with infasturctural engineering by building the tallest possible structure using spaghetti and also learned about aerodynamics through the construction of airplanes.
On June 3 and 6, we started our search for new Vulcan members by giving presentations at our local libraries for anyone that was interested in joining our robotics team. A group of 30 high school and middle school students came and we had many talented applicants.
On May 29th, we collaborated with the Bayside Robotics class taught by Mr.Brunner and gave a small presentation during his class period. We allowed the students to manuever the robot and explained the specific funtions. Through this program, we demonstrated real life applications of robotics to the middle schoolers and allowed them to interact with the electornics.
On March 1, we collaborated with teams 7591 Voltage of Imagination, 8865 Intersect, and 7303 RoboAvatars to conduct an informational presentation about robotics at the Fremont Main Library. We explained the game challenge; demonstrated our robot; answered questions about our team, robot, and the competition; and let people try driving our robot.