Agawam's FIRST FTC Robotics, "MIGHTY Mechanics", Gears Up for State Competition by Demonstrating Their Robot at Ronald McDonald and Heritage Hall.

Mighty Mechanics, a FIRST robotics club based in Agawam Massachusetts demonstrates their robot to Ronald McDonald House and Heritage hall as they prepare for their state championship.

MIGHTY Mechanics announced today their success and celebrated their enthusiasm by demonstrating their robot slated for state competition on March 8, 2014. This outreach engagement, did more than entertain. It provided awareness and involvement at two local community establishments. One for children and families who stay at the Ronald McDonald House in Springfield who need medical care, and a visit at Heritage Hall Nursing home where elderly people circled the room where the robot paraded.

Offering entertainment was the foot in the door for the MIGHTY Mechanics students as they spoke about their robot building journey. Sequentially they took turns sharing the process to the point where the team has a robot ready to compete, again, in efforts to potentially move on from the MA State Championships to the Super Regional located in York, PA and to the World Championships in St. Louis Missouri.

During the Ronald McDonald House visit, the MIGHTY Mechanics team set up their robot, displayed the recently-earned "Think Award", described their "design and build" journey, and let some of the resident kids use the remote control to drive the robot in the main living room.

"It was great to have the MIGHTY Mechanics show our kids their robot," remarks Enix Zavala, House Manager from the Ronald McDonald House in Springfield. "There was much to learn and see during their show and our kids reported back to us with thanks."
At the visit to Heritage Hall, the MIGHTY Mechanics Robotics team assembled their robot, prepared it for demonstration, exhibited their award, and individually spoke to the large group of about 25 Seniors circled around for the show.

Kathy Newman, assistant activity director, for Heritage Hall North in Agawam, MA said, "The residents were very excited and interested in seeing the robot that the MIGHTY Mechanics Robotics team had built. They enjoyed seeing the youth come from the Agawam community to show them something different than what they have seen as their generation did not have the opportunity to see an actual robot. The robot at our facility was very exciting."

The next competition is scheduled March 8, 2014 at the Bridgewater State University south of Boston. The team will need to arrive by 7:30 to set up and prepare for the competition. A variety of Judges, who have previewed the team's video and Engineering Notebook, will meet with the team as the MIGHTY Mechanics team will share the journey that provided their opportunity to compete in the state competition.

Besides all the robot building and driving fun, the real purpose of the club is to help students get a hands-on experience with real-life challenges that employees and employers face in the science, technology and manufacturing fields. However, as with most real-life adventures, many other business-oriented experiences prevail, such as marketing, administration, sales activities and more - all helping students gain career knowledge.

FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics is a program for students in grade 7-12. In this program, each year students are faced with a certain goal for the games staged by FIRST robotics worldwide organization. The MIGHTY Mechanics were challenged with a "Block Party!" game. Their goal was to build a robot that could deposit blocks in buckets on a pendulum , turn a wheel to raise a flag, and include a mechanism to raise the robot off the ground onto a pull up bar.

About Heritage Hall
We are a Transitional and Extended Care facility providing Medical and Rehabilitative Care for patients and residents. Whether you are here for ShortStay Care or extended care, our Clinical Care Teams are focused on implementing your personalized care program to facilitate your recovery and improve your well being. Located on the beautiful Heritage Hall Campus in Agawam, Massachusetts, we are a part of a continuum of care that provides Assisted Living, Transitional Care and Extended Care services to our community.

About Ronald McDonald House
The mission of The Ronald McDonald House of Springfield, MA® is to provide a home away from home for the families of children who are being treated in area hospitals. The facility accommodates these people at an affordable rate, regardless of income. The House provides a setting for families to receive emotional support.

About MIGHTY Mechanics
MIGHTY Mechanics is an Agawam FIRST (http://www.usfirst.org/) FTC program that provides fun and educational inspiration to help club members grow and learn more about robots and other business-oriented tasks. The MIGHTY Mechanics is run by head coaches, Jay and Charlene Cameron. They are also ably assisted by Coach David Blain, who is helping coach both the MIGHTY Mechanics and Rosie Robotics (and has 2 children on Rosie). They have all been involved in FIRST robotics for several years. For more information send an email to ftccoach@agawamrobotics.org or visit http://ftc839.agawamrobotics.org/.