Howell High School’s FIRST robotics team, the S.C.O.T.S. Bots, is headed to the FIRST Robotics World Championship for the second year in a row. The team qualified for the world championship by claiming a Regional Chairman’s Award at the FIRST in Michigan State Championship.
To be invited to compete for a Chairman’s Award at the state event, a team must have earned a Chairman’s Award at a district competition, which the S.C.O.T.S. Bots did at the Lansing District Event earlier this year. The team will compete in match play and for the Chairman’s Award at the world championship. The Chairman’s Award is the highest honor a FIRST Robotics team can achieve. It recognizes a team that best represents a model for other teams to emulate and best embodies the purpose and goals of FIRST Robotics.
“It’s nice to see that we are making an impact and that others are acknowledging that impact in the FIRST community and outside the community,” said Delaney Field, Howell High School junior. “We know how much we have grown, but this shows it to others and shows them that we are moving FIRST in a positive direction in our community. There are like 500 teams in the state and out of those 500 five were selected for Chairman’s, and we were one of those five. I think that is a great opportunity,.”
“I ran some numbers, and about 1 in every 28 students in Howell Public Schools are in FIRST Robotics, and that to me is huge,” said Morgan Carstensen, Howell High School junior. “That is a number that most teams don’t have. We have helped Brighton with Chairman’s and Hartland with Chairman’s to be able to show others what we do and help others is big.”
In addition to earning the Chairman’s Award, the S.C.O.T.S. Bots had a notable showing during the state competition. The team finished qualifying rounds in 8th place in their division and was named the captain of the fifth seed alliance. The S.C.O.T.S. Bots were eliminated from the competition during the quarterfinals. Had the team not qualified for the World Championship by claiming the Regional Chairman’s Award, their performance on the playing field at the state championship would have qualified them for the world championship. The team is currently ranked 35 in the state out of more than 540 teams.
Also at the state championship, Carstensen was named finalist for the Dean’s List Award. Carstensen is one of only 15 students from Michigan to advance to the final round of the Dean’s List Award. She will learn if she has been selected for a scholarship at the world championship event. The Dean’s List Award honors the leadership and dedication of FIRST’s most outstanding secondary school students,
“It (being a Dean’s List finalist) is really exciting. I got an email that I get to meet with Dean Kamen, who is one of the founders of FIRST and I get to have lunch with him, and that to me is so exciting,” Carstensen said. “The fact that my team nominated me and that they believe that I’m a good leader, it just means so much. The essay they wrote about me makes me what to cry because it is just so sweet. To see that, what I do for my team is having such a big impact that it is one of the best in the state is just huge for me.”
One of Howell’s First Tech Challenge (FTC) teams, Team KAOS, will also be competing at the FIRST Robotics World Championship. Team KAOS qualified to compete at the event in December when they claimed second place at the FTC State Championship.
The FIRST Robotics World Championship will be held April 24-27 at Cobo Hall in Detroit. Cobo Hall is located at 1 Washington Blvd., Detroit, MI 48226.