One of the things that currently exists within the Florida FIRST community that is fairly unique is our Alumni Association. This group, led by Barry Bohnsack, provides a variety of ways for students to continue their participation in FIRST programs after graduation. From volunteering with teams and at competitions to building competition-ready robots in a very short period, alumni have tons of opportunities.
We spoke with Barry about one of our favorite programs for alumni - the Robot in 3 Days (FIRST Robotics Competition) and Robot in a Weekend (FIRST Tech Challenge). This program encourages students at Florida universities to follow along with the game announcement video and build a robot for that game in a weekend. This season, at ROBOTICON Tampa Bay 2016, the Robot in 3 Days teams from around the state brought their machines for a scrimmage on the official FIRST Tech Challenge field. The idea of the program is to show current students what is possible with very little resources and time.
Scott is a developer who has worked on projects of varying sizes, including all of the PLuGHiTz Corporation properties. He is also known in the gaming world for his time supporting the DDR community, through DDRLover and hosting tournaments throughout the Tampa Bar Area. Currently, when he is not working on software projects or hosting F5 Live: Refreshing Technology, Scott can often be found returning to his high school days working with the Foundation for Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST), mentoring teams and judging engineering notebooks at competitions. He has also helped found a student software learning group, the ASCII Warriors.
Daniele is a student at Florida Polytechnic University who is studying Computer Science with a concentration in Cyber Security. In High School, she was introduced to the science and technology world through the Foundation for Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST), a robotics foundation where students of varying ages can compete through tasks that their robots perform. With help from mentors she met through FIRST, she became interested in programming and developing. Today, Daniele is a special events host for F5 Live: Refreshing Technology and PLuGHiTz Live Special Events and a co-host for both The New Product Launchpad and FIRST Looks.