ACCN, a community group with a history of changing lives of our youth, meets with the First Robotics Canada (FRC) leadership to explore the idea of an all-Black youth robotics team.
First Robotic (FR) has thousands of teams world-wide and hundreds in Canada but is concerned about the low representation of Black students. The idea of Team 7013 is born. Notwithstanding the intense nature of the 6-week Build, ACCN Directors accept the challenge of creating a rookie robotics team.
With heart and passion, ACCN meets with parents recruited by its volunteers. The search intensifies for a location to build the Robot. The venue has to be able to house the robot and its parts on the days the students are not building. The search also begins to locate a lead coach and other support volunteers with technology backgrounds. ACCN publicly launches the program near Jane-Weston Rd. and begins registering students, with particular attention to girls, thanks to a $2,000 Microsoft grant. Over the next few weeks 25 students are registered.
Ryerson University technical Instructor Joseph Amankrah agrees to be the lead coach and offers space at Ryerson University, Toronto. He brings a diverse volunteer group of student mentors, soon expanded to include non-Ryerson volunteers.
ACCN Directors begin to generate ideas on how to cover the $25,000 the team needs for robot parts, competition fees, transportation and other expenses associated with the intensive build.
NASA announces the 2018 Build Challenge as official kick-off. All teams around the world have 6 weeks in which to build their robots. While the students in team 7013 have interest and passion for robotics, they do not have the sophisticated skills in Coding; SolidWorks and the other technical and design aspects of robot- building—much of which is Math-based. They have never worked together as a team; they come from a diverse cross-section of backgrounds, cultures and geographic locations. They soon master these concepts and begin to design their robot.
Student enthusiasm for the project explodes. They name their team; divide into work groups—Electrical/Coding; Intake; Arm; and Drive. They meet Saturdays 10- 8, Sundays 1-6; and Wednesdays 4-8. ACCN volunteers and parents shop, cook for and feed the entire team weekly--up to 60 people--from their own pockets!
All watch in wonder as the robot grows from design; to unassembled parts; to drilling, cutting, woodwork and wiring. Girls are equally engaged...and loving it. Some talk of pursuing a career in robotics. Camaraderie and excitement grows as the Stop date approaches. Everyone goes home exhausted, but happy!
ACCN launches a fundraising drive that encompasses team-members; their parents and a now expanded group of ACCN volunteer parents and supporters. A parent prints the team’s work uniform. Another, a brand strategist, attends every build session, documenting the journey in still and video. Others provide meals.
Two weeks to end of build. Fundraising efforts are in full gear. The Team still need funds to complete the build but, undeterred they push on, trusting that once word gets out, sponsors will open their heart and minds to sow a seed into their future possibilities.
The Ryerson U. mentors and coach are with them all the way.
The students; Parents; ACCN Directors, Advisors and Friends would like to thank everyone who helped to achieve Team TECHTRONIX'S launch:
Monday February 12th 1: PM
Ryerson University -60 Gould Street Kerr Hall Room 25
Monday February 12th: Breakfast Television Air 8:15 am
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Mentors guide the Team members
TECHTRONIX Team gets a hands on guidance in assembling the chassis.
Step by step the TECHTRONIX team are taught coding of the robots movements.
BREAKFAST TELEVISION MONDAY FEB 12TH 2018.
A BIG THANK YOU TO THE BT STAFF.
THE ACCNTECHTRONIX TEAM.
Check out this great video