T.C. Williams High School’s FIRST Robotics Competition Team 5587 has received a grant renewal from the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) to expand and support the activities of Team 5587, also known as the Titan Robotics club.
Titan Robotics was established in 2014 with one goal in mind: to spread awareness of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to the local community by competing each season in the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition. FIRST was founded in 1989 to inspire the interest and participation of young people in science and technology. In the competition, teams made up of an unlimited number of students and mentors design, build and program a robot in six weeks.
The $5,000 will be used to help to cover the team’s competition fees and will enable the team to expand their outreach to ACPS students and the greater community. Last year, the team received a first year VDOE grant for the 2017 season in the same amount. The funding was used to help establish a shared maker-space at T.C. that provides an accessible environment where students can grow, test and use their STEM skills.
Titan Robotics is made of more than 35 students, who design, build, and program a robot from scratch to compete as part of the First Robotics Competition. The team consists of several sub-teams, each of which is responsible for different aspects of the robot. In addition, there is a sub-team responsible for fundraising and publicity. A small number of mentors help to supervise operations.
Titan Robotics meets after school, is open to all students and there is no fee to participate. The club aims to increase awareness of STEM careers among students through team competitions and community outreach. Students develop skills, such as collaboration, communication, creativity, critical thinking and ethics through these hands-on experiences.
Now in its fourth season, the team has participated in multiple competitions, advanced to district championships for the past two years and won a Northern Virginia FIRST Chesapeake District Spirit Award last season.
This year, Titan Robotics will reach out to middle school students as they establish a FIRST Tech Challenge team. Team 5587 will continue to mentor ACPS elementary school students who are members of a FIRST Lego League community team at William Ramsay Recreation Center.
The team will launch its 2018 competition season in January. The grant award will cover about 15 percent of the season’s budget. T.C Robotics students actively plan and participate in all fundraising activities to meet the balance of their budget. Learn more about the team and how you can support them.
See Team 5587’s robot at Science Unrestricted earlier this year.