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A Weekend in Northwest Minnesota

By Simone V., August 21, 2017

In early August, 1816 drove to Northwest Minnesota to spend a weekend with teams 5172 - Gators, Greenbush-Middle River, and 3750 - Gator Robotics, Badger. The teams (1816 and 5172) got along so well at the MSHSL FIRST State Robotics Championship that both agreed it would be great to have a summer retreat that would focus on specific aspects of the Robotics Competition.


Girl Scouts Can do Robotics

By Simone V., August 12, 2017
Fun and Learning at the 2017 Girl Scout Camp

Fun and Learning at the 2017 Girl Scout Camp

Fun and Learning at the 2017 Girl Scout Camp

Fun and Learning at the 2017 Girl Scout Camp
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The Green Machine partnered with the Girl Scouts of River Valleys to host a LEGO Robotics camp from July 17th to the 21st. The camp was geared towards Girl Scouts of all ages, and attendees ranged from grades 3 through 8. The camp was held at a Burnsville church and supervised by Girl Scouts mentors along with Green Machine students.

Team members divided up tasks in order to help the girls complete their challenges for the week. Girls new to robotics worked on the basics of building NXT and EV3 robots, while returning campers focused on more complex challenges, including building robots capable of navigating mazes and uneven terrains.


Team 1816 on Capitol Hill: Meeting with Elected Officials

By Simone V., July 6, 2017
2017 NAC Ready For Our Capitol Hill Meetings

2017 NAC Ready For Our Capitol Hill Meetings

2017 NAC Ready For Our Capitol Hill Meetings

2017 NAC Ready For Our Capitol Hill Meetings
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Team 1816 on June 24th travelled to Washington, D.C to speak with Minnesota Senators and Members of Congress at the annual FIRST National Advocacy Conference. The conference was originally founded by Steve Hyer from FIRST Team 27 - RUSH, who wanted the NAC to serve as a way for FIRST teams to connect with their elected officials and advocate for funding for after-school STEM activities like FIRST Robotics.

While in Washington, The Green Machine held meetings with Minnesota Senators Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar, as well as Senator Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin. The Team also met with Members of Congress Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-District 3); Rep. Keith Ellison (DFL-District 5), and Rep. Betty McCollum (DFL-District 4). The main focus of all of these the meetings was to ask these Members of Congress and Senators to support the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), specifically Title IV, part A, which gives states block-grant funding for after-school activities. Such activities could include STEM-based programs, like FIRST Robotics.