In August 2017, about a dozen of us students from central Vermont schools formed a FIRST Robotics Competition team. We named our student-led team Archytas, after the Greek philosopher who built an automated pigeon.
Archytas is a student-driven team, with youth members in charge of game strategy, design decisions, programming, and implementation. In all stages of building our robot, Archytas teammates strive to respect all voices while supporting the values and objectives of FIRST.
Our 2019 team has 21 student team members, ages 13 to 17, from five different schools and 12 Vermont towns. At the start of the season, a number of us had never seen an actual robot and had no clue as to how to design, build, and program one. Some had not used a measuring tape, turned a wrench, or operated a cordless drill. Adult mentors teach us those basic skills as well as the fundamentals of calculus, business letter writing, and Java programming. Their role is always to support us in realizing our vision.
Two years ago was our rookie year. We emerged from our first competition, the Granite State District Event in Windham, NH, as the top-seeded rookie team in New England, and were tied for the top overall team in New England. Five weeks later, we achieved third highest rank at the Greater Boston District Event in Revere, MA. This qualified us to compete in the New England District Championship in Boston, MA, where we finished as the highest ranked rookie team in New England and 22nd overall, earning a place in the FIRST Championships in Detroit, MI.
Despite our small size (14 members in the 2018 season), we brought home six trophies:
Rookie All-Star Award - Granite State and Granite Boston District Events
Highest Seeded Rookie Award - Granite State and Granite Boston District Events
Finalist Award- Granite State District Event
Rookie Inspiration Award - New England District Championship
Winning the trophies required a lot of hard work and hard cash. We anticipate that for the 2019 competition, we need to raise $40,000 to cover materials, registration fees, and travel expenses for our tiny team.
Archytas Education Corp
768 S. Main Street, Unit 2
Bethel, VT 05032
...is to inspire and cultivate the creative, technical, and collaborative capacities of students through hands-on learning in a robotics program that respects all voices and supports the values and objectives of FIRST.
Archytas Education Corp is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit education organization. Our FEIN is 82-2533761.