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Friday, April 12, 2013

Firelight Media is helping a local robotics team




 Firelight Media has been a long-time supporter of FIRST Robotitcs (www.usfirst.org); Through 13 years of mentoring students on Team 230 at Shelton H.S. (www.shsrobotics.org), 10 years of providing a global webcast of the New England Regional Event, and 3 years of helping a new team at Harding H.S. in Bridgeport.

The fruit of this effort has been gratifying to say the least.  Team Alumni have gone on to careers at NASA, Boeing, Sikorsky, Facebook, and even here at Firelight Media.  Yes,  current employee Tom Victor and college intern Thomas Keegan are not only Shelton Robotics Alumni, but for the last few years they have also become mentors, helping Firelight Media’s co-owner Steve Kline, and the other Team 230 mentors.

Not only has this effort provided excellent college and employment opportunities for team alumni, but it
has also provided once in a life time opportunities for the current students as well.  Our team mentored last year’s “Global Innovation Award” winner from Shelton Middle School’s FIRST Lego League team, for its Patent Pending new product design.  The “Smart Sticker” is currently in development with Edison Nation.  Another alumnus had her high school science project blasted into space on one of the last space shuttle missions.

This year Team 230 is celebrating its 15th Anniversary in FIRST as it competes in “Ultimate Accent,” a play on the game “Ultimate Frisbee” as shooting Frisbees is one of the tasks the robots perform this year.  And shoot Frisbees it does well, the team made it to the semi-finals in New Hampshire and made it to a high scoring finals match in Hartford earlier this month.  

Robot performance is only one aspect to an award winning team.  Teams also compete for Quality in Design, Design Innovation, Engineering Inspiration, and the Chairman’s Awards.  This year, Shelton Robotics pulled in the CT Regional Chairman’s Award which qualifies them to compete for FIRST Robotics’ top prize, the National Chairman’s Award.

This year’s National Competition is in St Louis MS, beginning April 25, 2013. The team is looking to raise money to defray the costs of the competition entry fee as well as the hotel and travel for students and team mentors as they compete against the best and brightest in the nation.  If you can help the team with a donation, small or large, please contact John Niski at JNISKI@sheltonpublicschools.org  –or- Steve Kline at steve.kline@firelightmedia.net.   Thank you for your consideration.


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