Mr. Flood, a former Physics and Engineering teacher at BMHS
Mr. Beckford, a former Physics teacher at BMHS
Mr. Murphy, the BMHS Principal
New Principal, New Changes
Mr. Murphy, the new principal for the 2013-14 school year, had some new ideas for the school. One of the ideas was to found a robotics team because he had previously worked at the Windham high school, home to team 3467, the Windham Windup, an FRC team. So in order to start up our robotics team, he asked two teachers in particular to help; Mr. Beckford and Mr. Flood. They had no clue what we were going to do or how we were going to do it, but they accepted the challenge.
Old Billerica Memorial High School
Our Humble Beginnings
Starting late in the winter of 2013, after a few team meetings to get a general headcount of how many members we were going to have, we began looking for an area to work. The automotive lab seemed perfect, except for the fact that it was chock-full of various objects the high school had accumulated over 30 years and had not thrown out. After a few grueling days of intensive labor over winter break, the end result was a usable workspace for the team.
The First of Many
The season started off in a mad rush to come up with as many ideas and designs to accomplish the task at hand. We were very eager, as it was our first year to design a cool robot. We had many different ideas for a ball controller, ranging from simple conveyor belts to complicated air-powered cannons. Needless to say, it was difficult to find a good design that we could all agree on. The next four weeks were a blur of building aluminum parts, delivery pizza, and a final scramble to the finish.
Aerial Assist - 1st Season
Our season was extremely successful for a rookie year. At our first event, the Granite State District event in New Hampshire, we ranked 15th and were selected to be in alliance in the elimination rounds and went on to the quarter finals. We nabbed Rookie All-Star, Highest Rookie Seed, and the Underwriter Laboratories Industrial Safety Award. At our next event at WPI, we placed 4th in the standings for qualification matches, and as a result, qualified to be an alliance captain. We also received the Highest Rookie Seed award and fit the requirements to attend the New England Regional event in Boston where we went on to win the Rookie Inspiration Award.
Spreading the Love for STEM
Following our very successful first season as a rookie team, we have been working to bring the message of FIRST to our community. We are now mentoring two FIRST Lego League (FLL) teams at the Billerica Recreation Department (the Billerica Bots and the Billerica Microbots), a FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) team at the Marshall Middle School, and a VEX team at the Locke Middle School and . It is our pride and practice as a FIRST robotics team to spread the word about the FIRST organization, and cultivate a love for STEM subjects for our future generations.