Welcome to SMITH FTC ROBOTICS program.
Students participating in Robotics are expected to:
Be enthusiastic about learning and contributing to a team
Be on time with work
Not miss meetings
Be a team player and be willing to be coached
Be available for 4-8 hours of time commitment per week
Come prepared to team meetings
Be respectful of coaches, mentors, advisors and FIRST/FTC principles and process
PARENTS & STUDENTS MUST read emails from Coaches/Mentors and take action as needed
PARENTS in order for your student to participate on a team you must volunteer in some aspect of the team process. This is not a “drop off” type activity.
PARENTS can volunteer in a variety of roles within a team
(driving, supervising meetings, organizing snacks or materials for events, mentoring students, guiding them on outreach or other tasks as needed).
What is FTC ROBOTICS?
FIRST Tech Challenge
FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) is part of the FIRST family of programs. FTC in Michigan is geared towards middle school students who want to compete head to head using a sports model. Teams are tasked with designing, building, and programming their robots to compete on a 12' X 12' field in an alliance format against other teams.
FTC is more than just a Robotics competition. Teams work together to conduct outreach and make community impact, practice communication and leadership skills to prepare for a judging interview session, learn collaboration and how to manage group process and gain knowledge through mentors and professionals in the field.
It’s a unique and FUN experience. Team members are expected to contribute actively throughout the season. Qualifiers are the opportunity to share and show what they have learned. If your team does well in qualifier, you will be invited to state and then world level competitions.
Kick-off is the official start to the FTC season and is when the season's game is unveiled. Robots are built using a TETRIX® platform that is reusable from year-to-year. Students use LabVIEW or RobotC to program their robots which operate in both an autonomous and tele-op mod.
Teams are challenged to develop strategies and build robots based on sound engineering principles. One of the goals of FTC is to recognize the engineering design process and "the journey" that a team makes during its phases. The team chronicles this journey in their Engineering Book.
Teams compete at an official event hosted by a tournament director under the guidance of our FTC Affiliate Partners. Awards are given for the competition as well as community outreach, design, and other real-world accomplishments.
Team selection and placement are done through our online Survey / Application. EVERYONE interested MUST use the online SURVEY/APPLICATION or they cannot be considered for potential openings on teams. FINAL decisions are that of the Coaches/Mentors of the 4 existing teams. In the event that more students apply, a waitlist will be created and interested parents will be invited to collaborate with other parents to create a new “Rookie” team.
Initial team invitation decisions are made in the Spring prior to next school year. There are limited spots on existing teams. New teams are encouraged to form with new coaches and mentors as needed and Co-Chairs of the Smith Robotics program are available to help guide new coaches through the process. We successfully added 2 new Rookie teams in 2018 enrolling a total of 44 students in the program with 4 teams participating last year. One of our Rookie teams won an award at their first qualifier and were selected to compete in an alliance in the final 3 elimination rounds. Our veteran teams made it to State Competition as well. And 1 experienced team won 5 awards at the Troy Qualifier event. Another won a prestigious Innovate Award.
Apply to be considered for the program today. First round of application process will CLOSE on MAY 31st, 2019. Selected students will be notified before end of June 2019. The survey/application will not be available again till AUGUST. Waitlist students will be notified by end of JUNE 2019.
Please review the SMITH ROBOTICS HANDBOOK before filling out the survey/application google form so that you and your student understand team member expectations, time commitments, parent involvement as volunteers with the team, role of coaches, mentors and support needed to run a team.
General Robotic Schedule
September: FTC Kick-off! This is the official start to the FTC season and is when the season's game is unveiled!
Dec: FIRST in Michigan FTC State Championship
Nov - Dec: Qualifier Events
March - April: Winning teams advance to Championship events
FIRST FTC website: https://www.firstinspires.org/robotics/ftc/team-basics
FIRST in Michigan website: http://www.firstinmichigan.org/ftc/index.php
(all new team applicants must read)
2019/2020 school year manual
Survey and Application form for 2019/2020 Teams. APPLY NOW
OPENS - May 16th
CLOSES - May 31st
Survey and Application Form will be open to additional applicants in AUGUST, 2019 for 2019/2020 school year. Students may be waitlisted.
(Open to Public)