There is more to FIRST than just building robots and driving them in competition. The very name of FIRST itself leads us to its ambitions: For Inspiration and Recognition of Science of Technology. The actual robot competition, is merely a vehicle for the inspiration of students to not only science, engineering, and technology, but to their full potential as human beings.
It is the inspiration, not the robots that are the main driving force behind FIRST. It is only by experiencing FIRST firsthand, that the self-fulfillment and satisfaction of inspiring people while having an incredible time building and competing robots becomes apparent. And as one realizes that the people that they have inspired may someday invent a cure to cancer, or invent some incredible invention, or discover something that will better the quality of life for all, they also realize that more people need and become involved in this incredible program. That is why we continuously seek to promote FIRST anywhere we can at Team 228.
Community Outreach through FIRST
Team 228 is always looking to reach out to the community to spread the word about FIRST. From having demonstrations in the cafeterias of our high schools, to marching in the region's largest annual parade with a FIRST float, to going to the local mall on a Friday night with our robots, Gus is always seeking to promote FIRST.
In addition to reaching out into the community, Team 228 has also been playing a major part in the Grassroots effort known as "Dean's Homework", in which FIRST teams reach out to our local, state, and federal government to seek support for the FIRST Program. Through Team 228's extensive letter writing campaign, both our State and Federal Congressional Representatives (Katherine Abercrombie and Chris Murphy respectively) support FIRST and similar education measures, and have spoken at the UTC/Connecticut Regional!
Here's some photos from community events where our team has participated in parades, public events, robot demonstrations, country fairs, and/or community outreach efforts. To view more photos of our team promoting FIRST, visit our "promotefirst" photo gallery tag page.
Gus Robotics Team 228 was founded in 1999 to bring the excitement and inspiration of the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) to students from Meriden, CT. Since then, our program has grown into a nationally-recognized robotics team for students from five different high schools in Meriden and Wallingford, CT.
Through our involvement in FRC and VRC, we introduce and inspire students to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Mentors from a wide variety of fields including teaching, engineering (mechanical, electrical, robotics), computer science, machinists, technicians, business executives and more, teach students relevant real-world experience and applications.
We've also built strong relationships with our local school district, businesses and organizations to help provide our students the best possible experience; these sponsors are crucial to our long-term success.
Recent graduates from our program have won over quarter million dollars in scholarships, and have gone onto a variety of careers in STEM fields.