Congratulations Team CyberKnights from King's High School in Washington and their mentor Kayla King! As the FIRST New England District Championship winners, the CyberKnights are competing in the the FIRST World Championship in St. Louis.
Other SWE sponsored teams at the championships:
- Team 179 Children of the Swamp from Suncoast Community High School in Florida, Mentor Lisa Smith
- Team 341 Miss Daisy from Wissahickon High School in Pennsylvania, Mentor Kirsten Jahn Richardson
- Team 5417 A-Team Robotics from Allen High School in Texas, Mentor Greg Burnham
SWE Program Development Grant winners:
Team 4455 Burger Bots from Warrensburg High School in Missouri, Mentor Brian Holmgren
The CyberKnights seek to inspire future leaders and increase opportunities for all students by using robotics to bridge the achievement gap, through peer mentorship in an inclusive and equitable environment.
The King's High School's award-winning robotics program serves as an educational community within King's Schools as well as FIRST Robotics. FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is an organization that seeks to further education in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and
Mathematics) fields and provide an environment in which students can grow academically and acquire skills vital to their professional development such as an exceptional work ethic and problem-solving skills.
The CyberKnights serve as the founding team of King's Robotics, a group of FIRST Robotics Competition, FIRST Tech Challenge, FIRST LEGO League, and FIRST LEGO League Jr. Teams. In its endeavor to successfully embody FIRST values and goals, the CyberKnights seek to create a team culture that sustains their community for years to come. From team recruitment, developing student leaders, maintaining a gender-equitable team, serving as FIRST ambassadors in outreach, collaborating with each other in a student-led environment, and asking corporations to support them as the next generation of leaders, the CyberKnights strive to be an organization of people impacting the world for FIRST.
FIRST STRONGHOLDÜ is a medieval tower defender game in which two alliances of three teams each select defenses to fortify their outer works before competing simultaneously to score points while breaching the opponent's outer works and capturing the opponent's tower.
Alliances compete against each other to breach their opponents' defenses, known as outer works, and capture their tower. They score points by crossing elements of their opponents' outer works, scoring boulders in their opponents' tower goals, and surrounding and scaling their opponents' tower itself.
During the first week we formed six tiger teams each comprised of five students (including business team members) and one mentor to independently develop game play strategy and basic robotic requirements and design. At the end of the week, each tiger team presented their conclusions to the rest of our team. Team 5588 Reign joined us for this fun event.
This was the first time we tried this approach to brainstorming. It was very successful and helped us learning the different nuances of the game. We then voted on the best strategy and design direction, and started designing and prototyping ideas for our robot.
Throughout the next few weeks, we worked on creating and finalizing our prototypes for critical robot subsystems focusing on chassis and actuators needed to breach the enemy defenses, ability to collect and shoot boulders, and ability to scale/climb the tower. We have finalized our CAD and are now fabricating parts!
The software team has been working with our control software and experimenting with various sensors. Using PID (Proportional Integral Derivative) algorithms we will be using a NavX IMU this year to help the robot drive straight and make accurate turns. We are also exploring using a camera with video processing to help with targeting when shooting the boulder.
The Business Team headed over to Olympia, WA early in the season to talk about FIRST to State Legislators. Washington FIRST Robotics and Team 1983 Skunk Works Robotics hosted this event (called FIRST Day) to thank state lawmakers for their support, as well as give teams a chance to share their personal stories about the impact of the FIRST program. We had the opportunity to talk to Senator Joe Fain alongside Team 2046 Bear Metal, and Senator Maralyn Chase. Along with sharing our impact in FIRST, we shared our Unified Robotics program to them, and they were very inspired by our efforts of bringing STEM and robotics to students with special needs
Throughout the season, we worked on completing the Chairman's Award Submission. We worked late into the night, to finalize an essay that really shows who we are. The Chairman's Award is the most prestigious award at FIRST, honoring the team that best embodies the mission of FIRST. We are continuing to work on the Chairman's Video, as well as our business plan and Entrepreneurship Award Submission.