March 31st, 2012
Rookie season 2013 (Ultimate Ascent)
Alex Jurek: Technology Education teacher at Becker High School
Mark Kolbinger: Assistant Principal at Becker High School
Year five. Our fifth season as a robotics team had many great things in store for CIS 4607. Numerous seniors who had been on our team since their freshman year have graduated: Along with this comes plentiful new and welcomed faces. For the 2017 competition, Steamworks, we competed in 2 regionals.
Week 1: Northern Lights - Duluth, MN: Our team took home the Regional Hardhat Safety Award. In addition we were awarded 3 peer pit safety awards. Our Chairman’s presentation team presented for Judges for the first time, gaining lots of great experience and feedback.
Week 6: 10,000 Lakes Regional - Minneapolis, MN: FRC 4607’s safety team won our second Regional HardHat Safety Award of the year, not only this but our 5th year team was walking away with the most prestigious award for the second year in a row: the Chairman’s Award. This award gave our team entrance into 2 additional competitions, the World Championships in St. Louis, MO and the Minnesota State Robotics Tournament in Minneapolis. Winning the Chairman’s Award this year meant that this would be the 3rd time in our five year history we would be attending the World Championships, and the 4th time our team has qualified for the Minnesota State Tournament.
Year four. We graduated a great class, but grew to 51 C.I.S. members. The team continued with summer RoboCamps and demonstrations at the Minnesota State Fair for the third year in a row. After seeing the continued interest in RoboCamp, we started three FTC teams and three FLL teams in our school district. With the mentorship from our coaches and student leaders, most of the youth teams experience great success during the first year of inception. This year our squad focused to expand our outreach to more teams in the area. We continued our work with the Central Minnesota Robotics Hub and expanded our hub to six teams from the original three. JUMPSTART was created with the help of St. Cloud State University to provide training sessions for veteran and rookie teams for the upcoming FIRST season. We mentored five rookie teams: 5913, 5999, 6045, 6175, 6176. This was our first season competing in two Regional competitions:
Week 1: Lake Superior - Duluth, MN: Our robot was a top tier performer and was selected to compete in eliminations. Although our alliance lost in the quarterfinals, our Chairman’s and Pit teams developed experience and knowledge to carry with us for our second regional in Week 6.
Week 6: NorthStar - Minneapolis, MN: Our robot was once again selected to compete in Eliminations. While the robot did not make it past the quarterfinals, our team took away two prestigious awards: Woodie Flowers Finalist (Alex Jurek) and the team won it’s first Regional Chairman’s Award. The Chairman’s award embodied all that the C.I.S. organization strives for to enhance FIRST. This gave us an entrance into two additional competitions: World Championships in St. Louis and the Minnesota State Robotics Tournament in Minneapolis. Again, our robot competed well and was selected in Eliminations for both additional tournaments. With 24 Minnesota teams competing at Worlds, we were 1 of 12 who were selected in eliminations to compete against the best in the world.
Our third year brought about monumental alterations for CIS as an organization. The team reached an outstanding high number this year, with 45 students: 20 girls and 25 boys. This catalyzed significant change in the way CIS was structured, resulting in more organized meetings, regrouping of tasks, and more explicitly stated procedures. The team also made significant leaps in its outreach, taking on even more events than the usual: CMMA Presentation, MTS Presentation, and inviting three local teams to the annual Pancake Kickoff, where student leaders led a handful of training sessions. At the North Star Regional, CIS saw a different showing of awards when it received the Team Spirit Award. We are proud of this, as we feel it accurately encompasses the advancements made in CIS’s entrepreneurship skill set: CIS’s Business Plan, Mission Statement, improved website, invigorated outreach plan, and more organized team layout.
The infamous “Rubber Band Theory” sums up our second season. With our great success the previous year, we felt heavily pressured to live up to the accomplished reputation we had formed for ourselves. Consequently, we decided to build not one, but two robots during build season: a competition robot and a practice robot. Our in-bounding robot, Gumdrop, carried us to the semifinals at the North Star Regional and to being State Runner-ups. This was the first year that we participated in offseason competitions; we attended both the Minnesota Robotics Invitational and Minne Mini in the fall. FRC 4607 saw success at Minne Mini and ended up winning MRI.
Our rookie year, we had 24 active members and 12 active mentors. The local newspaper referred to this season as “a Cinderella story”, and we agree. At the Minnesota North Star Regional, we were one of three teams on the winning alliance and were also honored with the Rookie All-Star Award. These acted as our golden tickets to the Minnesota State Tournament as well as the World Competition in St. Louis, Missouri. In St. Louis, we had the opportunity to interact with high-caliber teams from across the United States and from other countries like Israel, France, and Mexico. This proved to be a marvelous experience for all attending members. At State, we again found our niche as a defensive robot early on in the competition, and we ended up with a state title to put under our belts.