The Pennsylvania Capital Area Robotics(PACAR) non-profit association is currently seeking your support so they can enter another successful year of STEM based outreach to youth of the Harrisburg area, the designing and building of robots to compete in the FIRST challenges. We are a federally tax exempt 501c (3) organization with EIN Number: 47-4419457.
The FIRST organization
FIRST Lego League (FLL) and FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) (FIRST – For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) was founded by inventor Dean Kamen, known for designing the Segway Scooter in 1989 with the purpose of giving middle and high school students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with sciences, such as research, computer programming, electrical engineering, physics, pneumatics, and structural engineering.
In addition, this program allows students to exercise the knowledge they gain in their school classes for real world applications, gives them experience working one-on-one with professional engineers to solve scenarios, and teaches them good business and communication skills that are essential to make the teams successful.
FIRST achieves all of this through a “game” scenario they plan out each year. Using a kit of parts and (for FTC) off-the-shelf materials, teams design and build a robot that is capable of achieving the scenario’s goals.
Team members must understand the concepts of torque, traction and stress, know how to calculate gear ratios, program robots and program microcontrollers, build electrical and pneumatic circuits, build lightweight structures out of industrial materials and learn how to use tools in their correct applications. Quite a task for 5th through 12th grade students!
Registering for the competition is not cheap, and building a robot that can actually move when it reaches the competition floor is not easy. All teams are charged a fee for the robot kits and an additional fee for each regional, state and national event they participate in. Teams also need resources to purchase tools, materials, as well as mentors and volunteers to help out and point the team in the right direction.
Our current team the Javengers is located in Mechanicsburg, PA and is made up of kids from different schools from nearby areas.
Previous PACAR teams have competed at the state level 6 years in a row and have gone on to the national level competition 2 times. In the 2015-2016 season our FLL team (the Sixth Sensors) they were placed 3rd in Robotics overall at the Razorback Invitational which saw 72 teams from both the US and abroad compete for 3 days at the U. of Arkansas, Fayetteville campus.
Our previous FTC team (The Iron Struct) team competed in 2 seasons (2014-2016 and 2015-2016), and in both seasons qualified at the regionals and competed at the PA state championships.
In the 2016-2017 season, we have combined the FLL and FTC teams into a new team: The Javengers.
The team continued to participate in PA state championships every year.
Goals for 2018-19
Now, with a couple of years under their belts, we are setting our goals much higher. This year we hope to:
Promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) and robotics among youth in the Central PA Capital Area, through outreach activities throughout the Harrisburg, pa area.
Compete in the FIRST FTC program at the Regional, State and higher levels through rigorous preparation and practice.
Invitation to Sponsor
We need to raise funds and get the support of at least a few engineers to help mentor the teams to accomplish these goals. We are asking for your support in whatever form you can give. Sponsorship levels begin at $100, but we will gratefully accept any monetary donations that you are able to provide.
We have organized our Sponsorship programs into 3 tiers
1. Gold -- $1000 +
The Gold tier entitles the sponsor’s logo to be on team Competition Banners, T-Shirts and Website
2. Silver -- $500 - $999
The Silver tier entitles the sponsor’s logo to be on team T-Shirts and Website
3. Bronze -- $100 - $499
The Bronze tier entitles the sponsor’s logo to be on the team Website
We can also use machining/manufacturing services, donations of raw building materials or whatever hardware components and volunteer help from both engineering and non-engineering mentors. You use technology every day. Just think about what would happen to the modern world if suddenly no one else was interested in becoming a scientist or engineer. Despite the large price tag, FIRST gives back by educating young students about science and technology and inspiring them to put their skills to use in the real world. Having more students in the FIRST program equates to there being more students who will enjoy studying science, technology, engineering and math as well as more students who will merely go to college.
Please consider supporting us to help ensure the existence of future technological advancements while giving young people the opportunity to explore a whole new world.