Long time blog readers know that two of our kids have been very involved in FIRST Robotics. Last year you read how they barely made it to the New England Championships and didn’t find out they were in until a couple hours before they had to leave. Today we just learned that we have qualified this year as well for the New England Championships!
Each team goes to two district meets to determine qualifying scores for this regional championship. In both district meets, our daughter’s team came in third (out of about 45). If they had come in second in either one of those, going to the championships would have been a much more sure thing. So we’ve had to wait to find out if her team is going, and fortunately it has shaken out a little sooner than it did last year, with a whole two days notice before they leave Wednesday for this multiple day competition out of state in Massachusetts.
How many teams go to the New England FIRST Robotics Championship? 60. Where is our daughter’s team currently in the rankings? 60th. Yup, they got in by the skin of their teeth; but they can only improve their position! This championship will determine who goes to the International competition which will be held later this month in St. Louis.
Shown here are photos (not taken by me) of our daughter’s team #1099 from last month’s district meets. After seven years on this team between our two kids (who overlapped a year), it is odd to think that this chapter of parenting, which we have been involved in so avidly, is almost over.
FIRST is a great program that we can’t recommend highly enough. Our daughter built the electronics board, the chassis, and some of the pneumatics for this robot. She’s been an engineering squad leader and on the drive team all four years. She’s learned a ton, and had a lot of fun.
Go team #1099! Will this be their swan song or will they move on?