News

News

1816 Kicks off 2018 Season, Alongside New School Year

By Simone V., October 6, 2017

When 1816 team members returned to Edina High School following the summer’s construction, they found a reconfigured school and new possibilities for robot-build space and Team meetings. This new STEM Center is home to EHS’ Project Lead the Way and Computer Science classes during the day, and host to various STEM clubs and robotics after-school and well into most evenings.


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.


Seagate Opens Its Doors for Demos and Tour

By Simone V., June 21, 2017
Teams 1816, 2502 and 3042 brought their robots to Seagate Employee Appreciation Day

Teams 1816, 2502 and 3042 brought their robots to Seagate Employee Appreciation Day

Teams 1816, 2502 and 3042 brought their robots to Seagate Employee Appreciation Day

Teams 1816, 2502 and 3042 brought their robots to Seagate Employee Appreciation Day
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The Green Machine on June 15th visited its sponsor, Seagate, for a day of robot demos and a facilities tour. The team brought its 2017 season competition robot, Zeppelin, for a demo to Seagate employees and guests as part of Seagate’s Employee Appreciation Day. On this day the company showcased the work performed by employees over the last year, as well as the community outreach activities in which it has participated.


Engaging Girls in STEM

By Simone V., June 8, 2017

The Green Machine on May 17th hosted a robot demo for the South View Middle School GEMS (Girls Excelling in Math and Science) club. A total of 15 girls from grades 6-7 attended the demo, which was held in Team 1816’s robot build space within the Edina High School theatre workshop.

GEMS is an international organization that aims to encourage young women to become engaged in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) fields. The first GEMS club was founded in 1994; today the organization has helped to kickstart dozens of GEMS and Jr. GEMS clubs across the nation, including several housed within Minneapolis Public Schools.


1816 Places 2nd at MSHSL/FIRST State!

By Simone V., June 4, 2017
1816 Finished 2nd at the 2017 State Tournament

1816 Finished 2nd at the 2017 State Tournament

1816 Finished 2nd at the 2017 State Tournament

1816 Finished 2nd at the 2017 State Tournament
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The Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) on May 20th hosted the 6th annual MSHSL/FIRST State Robotics Championship, an event that this year drew the 36 top-qualifying FIRST Robotics teams from throughout the state. Although we finished 33rd in qualifications, The Green Machine was selected by Team 5172-Gators, Greenbush-Middle River, and Team 2169-KingTeC, Prior Lake, to complete the first-seed alliance. Our robot. Zeppelin, complemented the other two robots in our alliance, and the winner was determined by a 3rd match tie-breaker. Unfortunately, our alliance placed second to the winning alliance comprised of Teams 2883-F.R.E.D, Warroad; 2512-Daredevils, Duluth, and 3130-ERRORS, Woodbury.


Closing out the 2017 Season at the MSHSL State Tournament

By Simone V., May 17, 2017

The Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) helps promote FIRST Robotics as a high school Varsity sport, by holding an annual state tournament at the University of Minnesota prior to the end of the academic year. The State Tournament is affiliated with FIRST Robotics through the FIRST in Minnesota Planning Committee, which jointly administers the competition. More than that, it’s a fun way for qualifying teams to play the current year’s game, STEAMworks, for one last time in a full arena setting.


Minnesota 10,000 Lakes Recap

By Simone V., April 15, 2017

The Green Machine recently competed in the Minnesota 10,000 Lakes Regional competition, where the team won the Regional Engineering Inspiration Award, qualifying us again to attend the FIRST World Championships in late April.

The award celebrates a team who demonstrates excellence in promoting engineering within their community. Winning the award means that the recipient team’s travel fee to the FIRST World Championship is paid for by NASA.


The Weeks in-Between Competitions

By Simone V., March 26, 2017

Competing at a Week One FIRST Regional event, such as the Lake Superior Regional, is like participating in a shake-down cruise. One never knows what the robot will really do until it is on a real FIRST competition field.

We finished 19th after the qualification matches in Duluth, just enough matches to show us what work remains ahead. One of our newest team sponsors, HID Global, Eden Prairie, offered us time and space for additional practice, using our second (practice) robot. While there, we are working on improvements to the robot and driving techniques before competing in the Minnesota 10,000 Lakes Regional competition at the University of Minnesota.