Category Archives: Community Outreach

Warm Clothing and Food Drive

As an effort to give back to the community, the MidKnight Inventors conducted a warm clothing and food drive for students in New Brunswick. Throughout the past few weeks, we collected canned goods, extra coats and jackets, and cash contributions for the business team to go shopping for further donations.
200 pounds of food and 400 pounds of clothes were collected and delivered to the schools, where the teachers are currently sorting through the bags and inviting students and parents. We hope the donations will help these families through the winter, and we will continue to do more charitable work in the future!

NRG Robotics Football Showcase

Team 1923, The MidKnight Inventors, is excited to announce that we been chosen to participate in the FIRST Robotics Football Showcase presented by NRG. The event’s competitors include our own team,  along with One T.U.F.F. Team (Team 203 – Sicklerville, NJ), TechFire (Team 225 – York, PA) and the Firebirds (Team 433 – Flourtown, PA). It is an honor for our team to have been selected from more than 100 teams from NJ and PA to participate in this football skills competition. Each team has approximately 4 weeks to fabricate a robot to complete football challenges including an Accuracy throwing Challenge,a Long-Distance Throw, a Kickoff Challenge and an Agility Course. The competition will take place on December 6, 2016 in the Philadelphia Eagles’ Novacare Complex in Philadelphia, PA. We are beyond ecstatic for the opportunity and can’t wait to showcase our robot to the Philadelphia Eagles!

Boy Scout Merit Badge Fair

On Saturday, October 22nd, the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab hosted their Science and Technology Merit Badge Fair. More than 250 Boy Scouts from troops across New Jersey and Pennsylvania gathered together to take part in hands-on activities to earn badges in robotics, chemistry, and even fire safety! The MidKnight Inventors were in charge of handling the Robotics Merit Badge from start to finish. Leading up to the fair, MidKnight Inventors worked on building a maze and organizing legos in order for the Boy Scouts to build a Mindstorms EV3 robot. Students from The MidKnight Inventors gave presentations to the Boy Scouts on robotics and how it applies to education and the real world. Then, the Boy Scouts worked in small teams to build and program the robots in order to navigate the maze. Throughout the day, the Boy Scouts learned the fundamentals of EV3 Build & Programming while earning their robotics badges. We’re proud to be a part of the PPPL Merit Badge Fair and have enjoyed the annual opportunity to reach out to the younger community. We hope we’ll see these Boy Scouts on one of our FIRST teams soon!

National Night Out

On Tuesday, August 2nd,  the West Windsor Police Department hosted an event called National Night Out in order to strengthen the bond between residents and the police force. Initially created as a method of crime prevention in 1984, the event allows local organizations as well as the fire and police departments to interact in a fun environment with food, music, and activities. The MidKnight Inventors were invited to West Windsor Community Park to demo our 2016 robot, Knightmare. Our MidKnight FTC teams also demoed their own robots, providing a wonderful outreach and fundraising opportunity for both teams.

More than five hundred people had the opportunity to interact with different robots, learn about our team, FIRST, and its message. Parents and students were excited to learn about the team and how they could get involved. Moreover, the students met and spoke with Mayor Shing-Fu Hsueh and several board members who stopped by the booths to express their support. Overall, the event was a great success in gaining support from the community and bringing exposure to the team.

 

Adventures Day Camp

On Friday, July 22nd, The MidKnight Inventors hosted a demo for Adventures Day Camp, a summer camp for elementary to middle school kids from around the West-Windsor Plainsboro area. For most of these students, it was their first time being exposed to robotics and FIRST, and The MidKnight Inventors were proud to introduce them to the exciting world of science, technology, engineering, and math.

These students had the opportunity to meet our FRC team as well as two FTC teams, Team 9042 and Team 9927. The kids were ecstatic to play with past robots: RoBart (our frisbee shooter from 2013) and Knightmare (our 2016 Stronghold robot). MidKnight Inventors greatly enjoyed working with kids to “feed” and play catch with RoBart in addition to showcasing Knightmare’s abilities. Other activities included FTC robot demos, pin the tail on the zebra, and manipulating a robot claw to win candy. Despite the heat and humidity, the event was a success for all parties.

Goldman Sachs Tech Expo

The MidKnight Inventors recently displayed our robot, Knightmare, for Goldman Sachs officials at the Goldman Sachs Tech Expo. As a team, we put a tremendous amount of emphasis on making relationships with our sponsors and community, and jump at the opportunity to get more people involved with robotics. The tech exposition for Goldman Sachs was one such opportunity. Goldman Sachs has generously supported Team 1923 this year and we are extremely grateful for it.
Reaching out to our community is always a priority for the MidKnight Inventors; this exposition provided us with the opportunity to not only express our gratitude to sponsors but also promote the values of FIRST to their employees. We thank our friends at Goldman Sachs for this experience and their continued support to the team.

Goldman Sachs Tech Expo

MidKnight Mayhem IV

On Saturday, June 25th, The MidKnight Inventors hosted our fourth annual off-season event, MidKnight Mayhem, at West-Windsor Plainsboro High School North. This year, 37 teams competed in a modified version of the FRC 2016 game, Stronghold, and the MidKnight Inventors event reached over one thousand people from in and outside our community. It was a huge success for the team and the best year yet for our off-season event. A big thanks to all the families who donated their time and all our local sponsors for their donations. This event would not have been possible without them.

Congratulations to the winning alliance: 225 TechFire, 1640 Sab-BOT-age, 2607 The Fighting RoboVikings, 4954 Palindrome Robotics and thank you to everyone who attended. MidKnight Mayhem IV was a big success, and The MidKnight Inventors hope to see you all back for an even better MidKnight Mayhem V!

MidKnight RoboExpo

On May 20th The MidKnight Inventors hosted our annual Robo Expo! The outreach event was an open house for the entire community to come take a look at our previous robots like RoBART (2013) and MKI: X (2015). Our affiliated FTC teams, The MidKnight Magic and The MidKnight Magic Too, also had their robots on display. In addition, our younger attendees were also given the opportunity to try driving a practice robot. As if the event attendees weren’t excited enough, MidKnight Inventors also demoed our 2016 competition robot, Knightmare. The robot was driven around in the gym, and even shot balls into a basketball hoop!

The event took place at one of our local elementary schools, Millstone River School. Team members met with students interested in joining any of our teams and got people excited about FIRST. The outreach event resulted in a very positive response from the community. We received a considerable amount of signups from students interested in joining one of our MidKnight teams – anywhere from Jr. FLL through FRC.

Montgomery District Recap: Entrepreneurship Award!

On April 9 & 10, The MidKnight Inventors competed at their second district, hosted at Montgomery High School. After hard-fought matches, we ended the weekend as Quarterfinalists. Many thanks to our partners, Team 1989: Viking Robotics from Vernon Township, NJ and Team 102: The Gearheads from Somerville, NJ.

We were also announced as the winners of the Entrepreneurship Award, which “celebrates the entrepreneurial spirit of a team which, since its inception, has developed the framework for a comprehensive business plan in order to scope, manage, and attain team objectives and also displays entrepreneurial enthusiasm and the vital business skills for a self-sustaining program. The Entrepreneurship Award honors a team that is unique, enthusiastic and well organized, and one whose well-honed business skills will keep them operating successfully for years to come.”

Team 1923 poses with our Entrepreneurship Award at the Montgomery District!

Big congratulations go out to our business team; this is the first time The MidKnight Inventors have come home with this award!

Our next competition is the FIRST Mid-Atlantic Region Championship, hosted April 14-16 at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

October 31, 2016: MidKnight Robot Attack

Halloween started with a robot-filled morning as the MidKnight Inventors hosted our annual FIRST LEGO League scrimmage, MidKnight Robot Attack! During the event, teams practiced with both their robot and project presentations for in this year’s FLL competition, Trash Trek.

The event provided teams (including several rookies) with a valuable learning experience that will help them prepare for their upcoming qualifying events. They had the opportunity to test their robots in a competition setting; learning and having fun along the way!

With The MidKnight Inventors’ Minion Mayhem FLL State Qualifier coming up, this was a learning experience for our team as hosts as well. We had over 60 MidKnight Inventor students help out on Saturday, working as referees, team runners, concessions, and general event support.

Many thanks go out to those who helped make MidKnight Robot Attack very successful. We can’t wait to see you all on November 21st for our NJ FLL qualifier, Minion Mayhem!