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Students

FIRST Robotics Will Hold a Regional Competition at Rockland Community College

Imagine a competition where teams excited, technology-driven high school students compete head to head with robots they have designed, built and programmed themselves. Imagine hundreds of such teams competing in the Hudson Valley over a single weekend for the chance to advance to compete in front of 70,000 people in April at the FIRST Championship in Houston and again in May in Detroit. You don’t have to imagine it – it is real and will happen March 19 -20, 2020 at the Rockland Community College Athletic Center and you can be a part of it. Click here for event information.

FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) was founded by inventor Dean Kamen in 1989 and is the world’s leading youth serving nonprofit advancing science, technology, engineering, and math. This program inspires students in grades K -12 worldwide while teaching leadership by engaging them in hands-on robotics challenges. FIRST LEGO League Jr. is for grade K-4, FIRST LEGO League is Grades 4- 8, and FIRST Tech Challenge covers grades 7 -12, while the FIRST Robotics Competition is grade 9 -12.

The program is supported by corporations, educational and professional institutions and individuals who provide mentorship time and talent, equipment, and funding. Participation in FIRST is proven to encourage students to pursue education and careers in STEM-related fields. They develop self-confidence in STEM and real-world skills that can lead to careers in STEM related fields and more. High school participants are also eligible to apply for more than $80 million in scholarships to participating colleges and universities.

Working with professional Mentors participants design and build a robot, and compete in high-intensity events that reward the effectiveness of each robot, the power of team strategy and collaboration, and the determination of students. The competition teams create powerful mentoring relationships between the students and professional mentors, many of which are engineers and other professionals. The event starts with a Kickoff event that unveils a new, exciting, and challenging game. From the Kickoff, teams have limited time to build and program a robot to compete in the game using a kit of parts provided by FIRST and a standard set of rules. This year’s theme focuses on renewable sources of energy and is titled INFINITE RECHARGE.

Perhaps the program has achieved such amazing results because FIRST is known for Gracious Professionalism and Coopertition. If you haven’t heard these terms before – “Gracious Professionalism is a way of doing things that encourages high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and respects individuals and the community. With Gracious Professionalism, fierce competition and mutual gain are not separate notions. Gracious professionals learn and compete like crazy, but treat one another with respect and kindness in the process.” And at FIRST, Coopertition is “displaying unqualified kindness and respect in the face of fierce competition.” Coopertition is founded on the concept and a philosophy that teams can and should help and cooperate with each other even as they compete. Coopertition involves learning from teammates. It is teaching teammates. It is learning from Mentors. And it is managing and being managed. Coopertition means competing always, but assisting and enabling others when you can.

Last year nearly 100,000 high school students on 3,940 FIRST Robotics Competition teams took part in 100 district events, 11 District Championships, and 62 Regional Events (in the U.S., Australia, Canada, Israel, Mexico, and Turkey), and the FIRST Championship. Teams are comprised of professional mentors and 10 or more student members in grades 9-12. In addition, each FIRST team has one or more sponsors. Those sponsors include companies, universities, or professional organizations that donate their time, talent, funds, equipment, and much more to the team effort.

FIRST is a volunteer driven organization with more than 255,000 volunteer roles filled in the 2017-18 season. There are several FIRST programs in the Hudson Valley and opportunities for anyone reading this to become a volunteer. Many of the technical roles may require some experience and training but there are opportunities for safety advisors, field set-up, field re-set and similar tasks that can be a good fit for a first-time technical volunteer. Interested volunteers can visit the FIRST Inspires website at http://www.firstinspires.org/ways-to-help/volunteer for more information about how to become a mentor, coach, or event volunteer.

Your company can also support the Regional Competition by participating in the College and Career Fair planned for the first day of the competition, March 19, 2020.  Your participation will highlight the many career options open to these highly motivated students in manufacturing.

For more information visit the FIRST Inspire website https://www.firstinspires.org/

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MFG Day Events in the Hudson Valley

Students at Mfg Day

We will kick off Manufacturing Day here in the Hudson Valley early with Pine Bush High School’s First Annual Career night on October 4th from 6:30 – 8:30 at PBHS. We are inviting HV Manufacturers to register for an exhibitor booth to help inform students and parents about manufacturing jobs in the Hudson Valley.

Join over 30 Hudson Valley Manufacturers already committed to help educate parents and students about the importance of Manufacturing and potential career paths. Participating companies will have the opportunity to connect with over 250 students, their parents, and educators and discuss current and potential jobs including internships, part-time employment and apprenticeships. Help us spread the word about the importance of Manufacturing in the Hudson Valley. Find out what companies will be there below.

Then on MFG Day, October 5th we will be broadcasting live from EFCO Products, Inc. in Poughkeepsie with Tom Sipos on Hudson Valley Live. You can tune in at News Radio 1450 WKIP on iHeartRadio or 1450 on your AM radio dial. The show starts at 6 am and will feature a lineup of local manufacturers discussing the issues affecting their companies. We hope you will listen in.

Later in the day, several companies are hosting local students for tours. Ametek Rotron in Woodstock will be hosting students from Pine Bush and Sono-Tek in Milton will be giving tours to students from Highland. Nexans will be holding an event at their facility in Chester, NY as well.

It is never too late to take part in MFG Day. You can still sign up for the career fair with this link. You can also contact us if you would like to host a tour or open house. Events are not limited to October 5th, you can make any day MFG Day by opening your door to the public and raising their awareness of the importance and rewards of manufacturing.

Companies taking part in the Career fair at PBHS:

  • Pratt & Whitney, Aerospace Company – Middletown, NY
  • Allendale Machine Systems, Machine Tool Distributor of HAAS equipment – Allendale, NJ
  • Lloydz Motor Workz, Performance Parts to Riders of Victory and Indian Motorcycles, Pine Bush, NY
  • Ametek Rotron, Military & Aerospace Products – Woodstock, NY
  • Fala Technologies, Industrial Equipment Manufacturing, Semiconductor & Green Energy – Kingston, NY
  • Nexans, Advanced Cabling and Connectivity Solutions – Chester, NY
  • LoDolce Machine, Manufacturing Parts and Components for Military, Transportation and Computers – Saugerties, NY
  • Stanfordville Machines, Precision CNC Machining – Poughkeepsie, NY
  • Tompkins Mahopac Bank, Associate Member and Supporter of Mfg Workforce Initiatives
  • SUNY Orange, Middletown and Newburgh Campus, NY
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) – Albany Region, NY
  • Society for Manufacturing Engineers – SME
  • Mechanical Rubber, Custom Manufacturer, Transportation, Defense, Industrial – Warwick, NY
  • METCAR, Engineering Carbon / Graphite Solutions, Ossining, NY
  • Usheco, Inc, Manufacturing Custom Plastic Parts – Kingston, NY
  • Selux, Innovated Lighting Solutions – Highland, NY
  • Cambridge Security Seals, Manufacturer of High Security Loss Prevention Seals – Pomona, NY
  • SUNY Ulster, Community College offering Credit and Non-Credit Courses – Kingston and Stone Ridge, NY
  • Zierick, Manufacturing Complex Interconnection Requirements for HVAC, Automotive, Industrial, Medical and Security – Mt. Kisco, NY
  • Princeton Upholstery Co, Furniture Manufacturer – Middletown, NY
  • Mokai, Designers, Engineers and Manufacturers of Unique Watercraft – Newburgh

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