Lee County team has highest first-year score of any team in their division
LEE COUNTY – The Lee County Robotics team won the chance to attend the FIRST International Competition in Houston, Texas, due to winning the Rookie All-Star award at the Iowa Regionals.
Once there, the team rebuilt their robot and competed with some of the world’s top high school robotics teams.
“The amount of growth I’ve seen with these students from Monday to the end of the competition has been phenomenal,” said Robotics mentor Shalisse Johnstun.
When the team found out they qualified to attend the international competition, the students and mentors set to work fundraising, organizing the trip’s logistics and upgrading their robot to compete at such a high level. Within 36 hours of being notified, the team was on the road to the International Robotics Competition.
The Lc3 Thunderbirds joined over 450 teams from around the world and earned a winning record in the qualifying rounds, placing them in the top half of their 75-team division. They won the highest-ranking rookie team award in their division. Only one other rookie team earned a higher-ranking score in the entire competition making the Lee County team the second-highest-ranking rookie FRC team internationally.
“While competing was fun, I enjoyed interacting with the other teams more. It was incredible to see people from all over the world and all different cultures come together for one competition,” said Robotics Student Lauren Otte.
“Overall, I am so happy and fortunate our team was able to have this opportunity, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work from the team members, mentors, and assistance from our generous sponsors.”
High school students compete on a unique playing field with robots they have designed, programmed, and built themselves. They form alliances with other teams and compete to score the most points. The Rookie Seed Award celebrates the rookie team exemplifying a young but strong partnership effort and implementing the mission of FIRST to inspire students to learn more about science and technology.
This competition had teams from 11 states, 51 countries, and 35,000 participating students.
FIRST Robotics Competition is a program that uses competitive team robotics to expose students to STEM fields and educational paths while also serving as top-flight workforce development. Students on FIRST Robotics Competition teams get hands-on experience with the skills today’s manufacturers, and employers need.
The team will now turn their attention to next year as they build their program by recruiting new team members, working on community outreach, and fundraising.
The Lee County Robotics Team would like to thank the individuals and businesses who donated to their team. The team will be hosting an appreciation reception on May 19, from 4:30 – 6:30, at the Lee County EDG offices.
Donations to next year’s team can be made at GoFundMe at this link: https://www.gofundme.com/f/zjhyvg-robotics?utm_campaign=p_cp+share-sheet&utm_medium=copy_link_all&utm_source=customer
A list of items that are needed by the team to operate can be found at the following link: https://files.constantcontact.com/379d7dc9301/0332315b-d98c-4fa4-befb-71521821fb9b.pdf?rdr=true