The Tualatin Robotics Program was started in 2006 as a FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) team with 8 team members. Since then, we’ve grown to 65+ team members who comprise FRC Team #2002 as well as four FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) teams, FTC Team #4594, FTC Team #6733,FTC Team #8139 and FTC Team #4640. As part of FIRST, our teams create robots each year that participate in regional competitions.
For challenges, we brainstorm, design, build, test, and refine robots to compete with alliances of other robots during game matches. Robotics is a unique and cool activity. It is a “sport of the mind” that requires problem solving, innovation, creativity, and teamwork. We work with industry mentors who help guide our engineering process. We also have a marketing team that fosters relationships between our team and the community, recognizes our team sponsors, creates our team business plan, controls our team budget, and brands our team identity.
Our mission is to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders, by engaging them in exciting mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology skills, that inspire innovation, and that foster well-rounded life capabilities including self-confidence, communication, and leadership.
Dr. Woodie Flowers, FIRST National Advisor and Pappalardo Professor Emeritus of Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, coined the term “Gracious Professionalism.”
Gracious Professionalism is part of the ethos of FIRST. It’s 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. They avoid treating anyone like losers. No chest thumping tough talk, but no sticky-sweet platitudes either. Knowledge, competition, and empathy are comfortably blended.
In the long run, Gracious Professionalism is part of pursuing a meaningful life. One can add to society and enjoy the satisfaction of knowing one has acted with integrity and sensitivity.
Coopertition produces innovation. 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.
Come Join Us
Your skills may be in design, mechanics, programming, video gaming, marketing, business, photography, web design, or animation. No matter what your skills, we can use you on our teams! Tualatin Robotics is completely run by us, the students. We have mentors that help us approach problems and work together effectively, but our robots are almost entirely student-designed and built. To learn more about last year’s robot, see our robots page. To learn about joining or sponsoring our program, contact David Ellingson our faculty advisor.