TEAM A-05 members Sophia Newton, left, Barrett Makai, Eva Jones and Terra Mikkelson with their winning plaque at First Robotics Competition.
As of Tuesday, October 9, 2018
On Oct. 6, four female members of HRVHS FRC Robotics Team A-05 competed alongside 24 other all-female teams in the Girls Generation First Robotics Challenge robotics tournament at Wilsonville High School.
During Girls’ Generation, the girls are the drive team, pit crew, programmers and robot repair crew for an industrial size robot.
Historically, girls are less likely to enter STEM fields. Programs and competitions such as Girls’ Generation aim to change this paradigm, according to HRVHS robotics coach Jeff Blackman
“An all-female event has a completely different vibe than every other competition we engage in throughout the year. Kicking off the school year like this gives the female members of Team A-05 the enthusiasm and confidence to do or be anything they want on this team,” Blackman said.
The team had their hands full debugging computer code, fixing mechanical failures and figuring out the format of FRC competition.
The day started off rough with the autonomous period failing to run and drivers that had little or no practice in field play. As the day progressed, so did team A-05; at one point, the team was ranked fifth during the qualifying matches.
Some of the top teams noticed how well the girls had improved and Team A-05 was picked as an alliance partner with Flaming Chickens and Team Mean Machine. The three-team alliance went on to win the event and Team A-05 brought home the first place trophy.
New to HRVHS FRC team A-05 this year was Sophia Newton, Barrett Makai and Eva Jones, joined by veteran team member Terra Mikkelson; they were supported by team member Theodore Giles.