Employees Mentor High School Students
CAMBRIDGE, MA – In Michigan, Massachusetts, and Maryland, Vecna employees have ushered three different high schools’ FIRST Robotics teams into their competitive seasons. FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics is an international program that encourages high school students to develop their technological interests by working in teams to build robots that compete in games and other challenges at the local, regional, and national levels. Vecna’s employees serve as mentors for the FIRST Robotics clubs at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School (MA), Montgomery Blair High School (MD), and Willow Run High School (MI).
In Michigan, Willow Run High School’s Team 66, “The Flyers,” recently received The Chairman’s Award—the highest honor that a team can achieve at the regional level. Andy Allen, a product manager from Vecna’s robotics team who has worked with the students, reports, “The kids were elated and the mentors are very proud.” The Flyers are based in the Detroit area and have resiliently overcome the negative impact of local economic hardship upon their team. Allen explains that although the team lost its mentors and main source of financial support after a GM plant closure three years ago, “The team restructured and came back in force, expanding the team to about 30 people, maintaining the club’s 100% graduation rate, and attracting the attention of the judges’ panel.”