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Success Stories - All Saints High School Robotics Project

IEEE Canadian Foundation Grant Report by Paul McDonough, Technology Teacher and Robotics Team Mentor. All Saints High School

The All Saints Robotics Team is a dedicated group of high school students ranging from Grades 9 through 12. The objective of the team is to provide students with hands-on and practical applications related to the discipline of Robotics and Engineering. The All Saints Robotics Team was formed in 2006 to provide students the oppourtunity to gain experience in various technologies and disciplines such as design, programing and project management as well as team building and gracious professionalism. Our main objective was to compete in the FIRST Robotics Competition in Toronto, Ontario (Regional) and Atlanta, Georgia (World Championship) in April 2010 with teams from around the World. In 2009 the team crossed a major hurdle and participated in FIRST Robotics for the first time. In order to improve from last year we wanted to place higher in our regional event and attend the FIRST World Championship. Participating in the FIRST Robotics competitions provides our students with memorable and extensive experience in terms of technology and engineering. Through our objecties in participating in the FIRST Robotics competition we are helping foster the next generation of engineers and technologists.

The project had 3 intended outcomes,

  1. Foster hands on learning in the fields of design, computer programming, project management and engineering.
  2. Compete in the FIRST Robotics Competition in Toronto, Ontario
  3. Compete in the World Championship in Atlanta, Georgia
The first two of the intended outcomes were achieved. The students designed, built and programmed a robot to compete in the FIRST Robotics Competition in Toronto. Their performance on the field was hindered by mechanical failures however they did win an award for safety at the regional level. The students used industry standard programs like VX Works from WindRiver to program their robot as well as Solidworks Design Software to design their robot in 3D. Our third and final outcome was not realized. The team did not compete in the World Championship Competition in Atlanta. The reason for not competing at this competition was strictly because of financial reasons.

In the 2009/2010 school year the team saw enormous growth. The number of students involved doubled, our involvement in the community increased, we won an award for safety at our regional competition and we started to develop more of a team identity. Our new Identity has driven the majority of our success. The ASTECHZ (All Saints Technology and why Z well because itís cool) have a new name and motto, Dedication, Determination and Duct Tape. The team was also won an award for safety at our regional competition. This year the team chose to get involved with two community initiatives. They participated and helped pass on the spirit of FIRST by hosting a FIRST Lego League competition. They also raised approximately $2000.00 for the Stephen Lewis Foundationís charity, Grandmotherís to Grandmotherís, through their participation in the All Saints Rock-a-Thon. The team hopes to continue to build on their existing success in the up and coming year.

Photos provided by Paul McDonough





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