CARMEN Commercial Real Estate Services & Duke Realty combined forces, donating time and space at Park 100 to IndianaFIRST. The practice space provided for dozens of FIRST Robotics Competition Teams in Indiana to perfect their design and prepare for the 2012 FRC game, Rebound Rumble, in preparation for last weekends World Competition in St. Louis.
“The practice field was invaluable to our team this year. It allowed us to work out the bugs of our robot so that we didn't have a single mechanical failure at the Boilermaker Regional,” said Scott Miller, Project Manager, FRC Team 829. “It also allowed our drivers to have hours of practice driving the robot and it really showed in our performance. Our team was able to go undefeated in qualification matches and seed first in the tournament. Many thanks from FIRST Team 829.”
FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) challenges teams of young people and their professional mentors to solve a common problem presented in the form of a high-intensity, sport-like game. In just six short weeks, teams of 25-40 students are charged to design (using CAD software), manufacture, and build a human-sized robot capable of competing in the annual game. Teams made up of high school students, teachers, engineers, technologists, and other adult mentors compete with teams from around the world in what is commonly referred to as “The Super Bowl of Smarts”.
Longtime Board member and advocate of TechPoint Foundation for Youth (TPF4Y) programs, Chris Carmen, President of CARMEN Commercial Real Estate Services, worked to secure practice space for TPF4Y’s current philanthropic start-up, IndianaFIRST, who promoted the space to all Indiana FRC teams.
“CARMEN was thrilled that Duke Realty stepped in and generously provided space to these students who represent some of Indiana’s brightest,” said Chris Carmen. “When you see these kids compete and the real-world learning involved in this program, it’s simply contagious, and we were happy to help secure a space for them to practice and appreciate Duke Realty’s generosity.”
Nine Indiana Teams won the chance to compete at the FIRST Robotics Competition World Championship:
o Carmel High School, FRC #868-Winner of the Engineering Inspiration Award at Purdue’s Boilermaker Regional.
o Center Grove High School, FRC #1741-Winner of the Engineering Inspiration Award at Queen City Regional.
o Huntington County 4-H, FRC #1501-Alliance Winner at the Boilermaker Regional.
o Perry Meridian High School, FRC #234-Alliance Winner at the Boilermaker Regional.
o Knightstown HS & New Castle Career Center, FRC #3947-Winner of Rookie All-star Award at the Boilermaker Regional.
o Kokomo High School, FRC #45 Alliance Winner at the Queen City Regional & Rookie All-star Winner
o Michigan City & Marguette High School, #3936-Winner of Rookie Allstar Award at the Midwest Regional.
o West Lafayette Jr/Sr High School, FRC #461, Winner of Chairman’s Award at Washington DC Regional.
Three teams from Stuart, Fla., Mountain Home, Ark., and North Brunswick, N.J. won the final showdown, earning the covetedFIRST Robotics Competition Championship Winning Alliance. Several other U.S. and international FIRST student robotics teams earned honors for design excellence, competitive play, research, business plans, website design, teamwork, and partnerships. (April 28, 2012, www.usfirst.org)
IndianaFIRST's mission is to inspire young people to be leaders in STEM industries by engaging them in exciting mentor-based robotics programs that build hard skills in science, engineering, and technology as well as valuable 21st century skills such as communication and critical-thinking.
TechPoint Foundation for Youth identified IndianaFIRST as one of its “Greenhouse Initiatives” in 2011, and pledged to assist the organization in its aggressive goal to provide access to high school level FRC programs to 50% of Indiana’s student population by 2015. TPF4Y’s support enabled IndianaFIRST to pilot a training and development program for 11 FRC rookie teams in 2011, preparing them for the 2012 competition.