The Dana Hills High School robotics team recently captivated elected officials in San Juan Capistrano with a captivating presentation showcasing their award-winning robot Trident. As the team demonstrated the mechanics and capabilities of the robot, they also emphasized the numerous benefits of their program for teenagers and how it fosters a love of science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM).
Known as FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), the competitive robotics program provides a platform for more than 3,000 teams, including Dana Hills High School, to participate in engaging robotics challenges. According to DHHS junior Aidan Lindsay, FIRST’s core values include discovery, innovation, impact, inclusion, teamwork, and fun. The organization strives to inspire students to not only embrace STEAM and engineering but also become empathetic adults capable of solving global issues.
Each year, FIRST presents a new challenge for participating teams. Dana Hills High School Robotics Team dedicates the first six weeks of the season to comprehending competition rules, collaborating on potential designs, and brainstorming solutions. The team tests and prototypes ideas to ensure their validity before digitally sketching them using computer-assisted design. From there, they fabricate and assemble the robot, continuously iterating and improving throughout the season.
The challenges presented by FIRST change annually. For example, in a past competition, teams had to design a robot that could shoot balls into a central hoop for scoring points. This year, their robot must earn points by placing cubes on shelves and cones on posts.
The Dana Hills High School Robotics Team has achieved notable success, triumphing in five events and receiving six awards in various categories, such as manufacturing, programming, and team operations. Moreover, the team recently secured a victory in a challenging competition held in San Jose.
The ultimate goal of the team, according to senior Moises Martinez, is reliability and consistency. A robot that can perform well in the field is more valuable than one that may be complex but unable to execute the required tasks.
Councilmember John Campbell, who previously witnessed the team’s competition at Capistrano Valley High School, commended the students for their passion and enthusiastically expressed anticipation for their future accomplishments. The dexterity, creativity, and problem-solving skills displayed by the Dana Hills High School Robotics Team serve as an inspiration to youth and exemplify the profound impact of STEAM education.
What is the purpose of the FIRST robotics program?
The purpose of the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) robotics program is to inspire students to embrace science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) through engaging robotics challenges. It aims to foster core values such as discovery, innovation, impact, inclusion, teamwork, and fun.
What are the challenges faced by the Dana Hills High School Robotics Team?
The challenges faced by the Dana Hills High School Robotics Team vary each year as presented by FIRST. In previous competitions, the team designed a robot to shoot balls into a hoop for scoring points. In the current year, their robot must earn points by placing cubes on shelves and cones on posts.
What recent achievements has the team accomplished?
The team has won five events with their robot Trident and has received six awards in categories such as manufacturing, programming, and team operations. They also secured a victory in a challenging competition held in San Jose.