The Community and the High Rollers
The goal of FIRST® Robotics is to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders through engagement with mentor-based programs that build technology skills. But for Team 987, The High Rollers - That's Not Enough! As a team we must reach out and support other teams in our community, from the beginner FIRST Lego League (FLL) teams all the way up to peer FRC teams. We are a great team not because we build some of the best robots in the FRC that win many competitions, we are a great team because we can reach out and help other teams accomplish their goals so they too can reach their potential and aspirations. And that’s how our team can change the world - sharing what we know, maintaining a leadership role in our local FRC community, and helping other teams to succeed.
Anthropologist, professor, lecturer, and author, Dr. Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.” Through our Team, we will continue our efforts to accomplish and embody the ambitious goals set forth by Mr. Dean Kamen, creator, and founder of the FIRST® organization, to inspire future generations of students who will be the next group of "committed citizens" to help solve the next generation of technical problems with novel solutions.
That's still Not Enough! Our team provides assistance and support outside the robot community as well. In the recent past, the members of Team 987 and their families collected a large stockpile of perishable and non-perishable food for donation to a shelter just in time for Thanksgiving at the Catholic Charity Shelter, a Toy Drive also to a local family-based charity, a donation of school clothes, backpacks, and other wearable items to Goodwill, and very recently our Team President, Yahir Gonzales Sanchez, spoke on behalf of the Superintendent's Student Advisory Committee to the topic of school safety, aired on local channel VegasPBS. Throughout the year we are always looking for ways to contribute by utilizing our team members as school representatives and ambassadors at public events, trade shows, and demonstrations, donations of food and clothing to shelters and charitable agencies, and anything else we can do when we are not building more robots.
ROBO.CAMP brings the ideals of FIRST® to elementary and middle school students. Our team established ROBO.CAMP in 2007 with the goal to provide mentors, equipment, and training sessions to a younger generation of students at their school or at the Cimarron-Memorial High School campus. Through exciting, hands-on, and competitive fun, the "Campers" play competitive matches on either our VEX playing fields to learn first-hand the importance and applications of STEM. Campers build and test their robot designs with VEX EDR or VEX IQ hardware, and mechanical parts made of aluminum, plastic, rubber, and steel, motors, and programming code, and compete against other robots on the playng field. Due to the popularity and growing attendance of the program, a program that started with only a handful of student campers, has grown to hundreds of students across four states in the Southwest and counting. ROBO.CAMP financially benefits these hosting teams by helping them raise funds needed to sustain their robotics programs and helps jump-start their recruiting efforts.
Cimarron-Memorial High School is a Title I school which means over half of our students come from low-income households. And while this means we sometimes must do more with less, our student body is energetic and committed to engage the challenge of participating in this STEM education program. In 2014, we adopted the MERIT Academy and introduced formal engineering and Information Technology (IT) studies into the daily curriculum at CMHS. This curriculum is project-based and offers the students firsthand opportunities for a learning experience and gives them a preview into the FIRST® program where they can exercise their new skills by designing, building, and creating on a larger scale, and participating in FRC competitions.