New Hartford RoboSpartans
The New Hartford RoboSpartans are a small Central New York basement robotics team determined to improve STEM opportunities for its members and the surrounding community. We're funded solely by the generosity of a few sponsors, our team parents, and coaches. The team started in 2008 as an FLL Team, participated as a top 20 Finalist MoonBots Team and moved into FIRST® Tech Challenge in September 2010 as the only competing FTC team within a 50 mile radius of Utica, New York. The RoboSpartans won 12 FLL trophies in 2 years and then won the FTC Connect Award and Think Award in 2011 at their only two FTC tournaments for their rookie season. There's 5 RoboSpartans, all are current FIRST Tech Challenge Team Members (#4082) with varying levels of robotics experience. Mike Betro is our main FTC Tetrix Builder/Driver, NXT-G programmer and robot SUMO'r. He has the most patience and is our coolest under pressure team member. Zachary Goldsmith is our lead CAD Designer/RobotC Programmer. He's a natural teacher and mentor - and a true perfectionist. Both Mike and Zach were on our MoonBots 1.0 Team and our Smart Move FLL Team that went to the World Festival. Alex Catera joined our team this Spring with a strong background in math & science and key organizational skills. He's jumped into robotics with a wealth of new ideas that we appreciate. Maysara Elazzazi and Ryan Payne have 3 years of FLL experience, attended over a dozen robotics tournaments including a World Festival and a US Open Championship, have 1 year of FTC experience, and participated in MoonBots 1.0. Mays is our key facilitator, blogger and engineering notebook coordinator. He's also our back-up NXT-G & RobotC programmer. Mays is the guy you think isn't paying attention and then comes up with the most amazing idea. Mays is headed to Egypt for several weeks this summer - so he'll be conferencing in to our meetings for a while - making things even more interesting. Ryan is our LEGO® building specialist and robotic attachment/arm operator. He's our go-to problem solver with an amazing knowledge of LEGO parts. Our Team Captain, Coach Bob Payne, established the RoboSpartans Robotics Team in 2008. Our team works well because we all have our own specialties while making sure we know how to fill in for each other. We spent last summer learning rocketry, mentoring FLL teams, facilitating robotics camps, demonstrating robots and - working on MoonBots. Here we go again! How did our little basement team in the middle of nowhere get this far? Audacity. President John F. Kennedy once said in a speech regarding space exploration "we must be bold"... and we are! We're all looking forward to our 2.0 summer!