2005 version: How did you thank your mentors and sponsors?

Every year, there are those heroes that make a team successful just so that a group of students could enjoy, learn and get inspired. This year is coming to an end and I want to take a moment and thank those on my team who made the year possible, and hope you do too in this thread. We all know its not easy to build a robot, or make arrangements for a trip of a whole team to any event. We know we are obnoxious kids who make mistakes while we have fun and cause problems. It would be nice if you can name some of your mentors and give them a personalized Thank you in front of the CD community to compensate and to generally thank them for everything. If you don’t want to write a long post, atleast their names and a small thank you will help. So here I go:

Wayne Cokeley: You have made up for everything we are lazy to do and kept yourself awake in the nights just so that we can go on these trips and enjoy. Thank you so much.
Lauralynne Cokeley: Unbelievable organization stuff for 25 and 1089. You are definitely a mom to our team.
John Chester: Oh wow, a parent engineer - so cool. Thank you soo much for helping me with the encoders and the rest of the season with maintaining the robot.
Shaun McNulty: Thank you very much for backing me up when I was right and guiding the drive team on how to play the game.
Kristina Evanouskas: Volcano crew and has done quite a lot to help keep the team under control. Amazing person.
Big Mike: Thanks for those encoders man… good stuff.

The BMS crew - Walter, Kevin, Tony, Charlie, John & Mike: Thanks a ton for being there to help us go through the build season and the season even though you had a very tough time at your job. I will always value and never forget all that you have taught me.

I feel nothing but honored knowing all of you.
Thank you very much,
-Bharat Nain

I am amazed that threads like this didn’t have any posts.

I have a lot of mentors to say thanks to… but there are few who I definitely want to point out in this thread.

Jack Vanderzee (Team 108 Engineer): Stack Attack 2003 season, Florida Regional, Team 108’s transmission broke after every single match. It was like that for all 3 days. Saturday morning, he walks up to me and looks at my face. I was upset because of how the robot was breaking. He tells me “Arefin, the last smile will be yours.” We get through qualifying and got picked by team 212. We went onto winning the Florida regional with team 212 and team 168. After we won the gold, he comes up to me again and tells me “I told you Arefin, the last smile will be yours, hard work always pay off.” Yup… he is a very inspiring engineer. He always told me not to give up and he believed in me.

Felix Alvarez (team 108 Mechanical lead): An engineer who always inspired me to do everything on the robot.

Craig Bishop: (Team 108 team-leader): Engineer who joined the team 2004 season and changed the team in a good way. A very inspiring, friendly engineer, who is very good at showing what teamwork means.

Zahir Hassan (Team 108 Electrical lead): He has been on the team for 10 years. Always been there for the kids, always there to help and organize the team.

Garry Ardizone (Team 108 Engineer): An engineer who always makes you put a smile on your face.

Stan Shelton (Team 108 Teacher): A man who speaks for himself. Throughout my high school career, he has been there to help me to take every little steps. I still remember the first day in his class, when I walked up to him and said hello.

Andy Baker (Team 45 Engineer): Other than John-V-Neun, he is the reason that I am so into meeting new engineers in FIRST. Andy spent a lot of time with me explaining different aspects of gearboxes, ratios, how it works. He is one of the very first reason, I know how to design a gearbox.

John-V-Neun (Team 229 lead designer, now an engineer): After getting a lesson from Andy Baker, I still had a lot of questions that I needed answer to. Thats when this man came in play. John sat through hours and hours to teach me how to design a gearbox, how to draw it up, and what is the proper way to do it.

Ron (Team 107 Machinist): I met him back in 2003 at Midwest Regional, when I needed to make a shaft and I ran to his pit. Ron let me use his lathe (that he custom made), and ever since every single competition I go to, I would stop by and talk to him. Not only that he is very inspiring, he is also a good friend. At the championship, this past season, he almost brought tears to my eyes. He met my gf at the championship. He promised me to plant an Oak tree in his backyard in remember of me and my gf. He also told me that I am always invited to his house. Now I have a reason to go to Michigan. In a very little time, this man has won all my respect. A very inspiring, great contributor to FIRST, he is one of the mentors who you really want to keep in touch with.

… There are many more mentors who has inspired me. But I had to pick out these few special ones. They have done a lot for me. I am what I am because of their inspiration and their hard work. I thank them with all my heart. They are the reason I will be coming back to FIRST.

In a chat two nights ago… we were having a conversation about how few students are graduating and if they will ever be back in FIRST. Kyle from team 45 said “Dude, I still have 2 years left in FIRST ahahaha…” My response to that was… “Kyle, I have till the day I die.”

I would like to say thank you to a ton of great mentors!

Andy Baker: Thanks for being a great guy to deal with for 6 weeks, and keeping me positive and upbeat throughout the year.

Steve Butler: Thanks for making our robot have a racecar heart. The Zeus fasteners are great!

Mark Koors: Thanks for doing a lot of behind the scenes work that most of us did not see…or know about.

Alan Anderson: Thanks for giving the robot the “brain power” to get us through 2 regionals and nationals. You are greatly appreciated!

Amy Prib: Thanks for dealing with the Chairmans (with the help of great students) and tshirt stuff and doing a lot of the scouting work, great job.

Chris Byam: Thanks for doing a great job getting clearance from the school for all of our activities and thanks for being a great cheerleader! :stuck_out_tongue:

Tom Sweeny: Thanks for doing the scouting this year with Amy, this year had better scouting then last, I think.

Mike Coady: Thanks for being a great guy to keep us cheerful when we lost a match at the competitions, it’s great to have you on the team now.

Art Anderson: Thanks for being a great guy to be with in the pits, you are a valued member of the team, stick around with us for the years to come!

Randy Abney: Thanks for being in the pit and helping out with the robot this year, I look forward to the years to come with a great pit crew.

Christie Swindell: Thanks for taking care of some of the other teacher stuff that was a job for more then just 2 main teachers.

And most of all thanks to all the members of the TechnoKats robotics team for making this season purely awesome! I am really sad to know that my FIRST career is now half over… :frowning:

The long, important list begins…

Mr. Ken Morrison-Our team would literally not exist without him. He has started the program, ran it by himself mostly, and built up the infrastructure for it (fll in every elementary). Corry schools, not to mention our team would be lost without you.Thanks

Mr. Mather- An indespensible mentor when you need to machine something correctly(you can tell we don’t use him much. j/k!) He has been there on Saturdays when no one else answers their phone. Thanks alot!

Mr. Tomcho- For someone who wasn’t a mentor this year, he sure was there alot! Despite college courses almost every night, Mr. Tomcho managed to be there whenever we seemed to need him. Welding at 10:30 PM…

Thanks to all our mentors and sponsors. You keep our team afloat.

Thanks alot to everyone’s mentors and sponsors! Without you guys, CRT wouldn’t have anyone to compete against!

This is I wrote last year in recognition of team 716’s wonderful mentors. This year, there are a few things I want to add, as well as a few new faces to recognize.

Andy Brockway and David Lindsay, our 2 main mentors, have been with us since the very beginning. They have been sooo generous to give up their time to teach and lead us. They teach us by letting us make mistakes…that way we will never make the same ones again.

David Lindsay (Coach), is an HVRHS Science teacher. He is truly wonderful. He founded our team after learning about robotics at a conference. He sought help from the Aztechs (team 157) who were very generous to us in our first year and donated some parts. Now his primary role is to coach us, do paperwork, organize, and set team goals (as well as fall asleep in the oddest places during our competitions.) He also is responsible for driving the team (and getting us lost)to and from our competitions, including to Atlanta (this guy says that next year we will get to Atlanta via San Diego) Because of his dedication , we gave him the first annual “David Lindsay Award” for his years of leadership and dedication he has given to our team.
David Lindsay continues to do outstanding work for our team. Last year, he was responsible for getting our team’s animation program up and running for the first time. As a result of his effort in locating a former HVRHS alumnus to teach students animation in 3DS MAX, our team entered a submission for the Animation award for the very first time this past season.

David Lindsay is also in the process of organizing a mini VEX/Lego tournament for teams that he wants to start in the Region One School District.

Andy Brockway (mentor and chief strategist) is a mechanical engineer who works for BD (Becton Dickenson). His philosophy has always been to recognize and teach the importance of good attitude, to make the best of any and all failure that you may encounter, and to teach us by not always giving us the answers right away. I am always amazed at his talent for leading us as a group, whether it is brainstorming sessions or a crisis in the pit. He has taught us not to rush into the design process…rather we should figure out our strategy and what we want to do first.

During build season, if he knows you are about to make a mistake, he will not tell you about it (unless it is really serious) so that you can find out about it yourself and truly understand the problem. This happened to me several times this year, and even though it was not always the most fun way to learn, it was certainly the most effective. I know that I will not do the same things again (hopefully).

He also teaches us the importance of good planning. He will not let us rush into building a part without drawing it out and getting every dimension first…even if we “know” exactly how we are going to build it. This is because often you do not take certain things into account and other people will understand your ideas better if you can draw them out. This is also the best way to fabricate something. He taught us that if you know exactly how you will make a part by drawing it out, you will have less room to make machining mistakes.

Andy is a great thinker as well as an engineer…he understands the meaning of gracious professionalism and strives to teach us the meaning of this value. He teaches us to understand the importance of diplomacy toward other teams, and teaches us that FIRST is foremostly about learning, inspiration, and teamwork, and about competition last.
The above pretty much sums it all up for 716’s mentorAndy Brockway. Andy has been a continued inspiration for both me and many other members of 716. As well as being an incredible mentor (as detailed above), Andy has also shared team 716’s two-speed and one-speed transmission designs over the years.

In addition to our two main advisors, Dave and Andy, we have countless other volunteers and mentor on our team…Dave Van Deusen, who helps us with fabrication (and paint jobs) and who is a skilled tradesman, “Big” Pat R. who is a carpenter and helps us build the playing field, as well as videotape our matches, “Doc”, chemistry teacher who tye-dyes our team shirts,plus all of the many parents and other volunteers who bring in food. I also can’t forget to mention all of the other supportive staff members at our school who give us moral support, as well as make sure we get money from the school budget, especially our wonderful principal who lent us her beach home in New Jersey for the J&J regional.
I would like to add some special recognition for Dave Van Deusen - this year, he received the second annual “David Lindsay Award”, which recognizes outstanding leadership and mentorship of the Who’sCTEKS. His help was invaluable in the pit, and his sense of humor would brighten up even the darkest moments of crisis.

The Who’sCTEKS were blessed with a new, outstanding mentor this year - Mrs. Fuller. A secretary at HVRHS, Mrs. Fuller became hooked on robotics when she attended the offseason event “Bash at the Beach” last fall. Mrs. Fuller has been invaluable to our team - organizing fundraisers and coordinating meals during the build season. Her cheerful and positive attitude has been greatly beneficial to our team, and she is warmly welcomed back to the team for another great season in 2006. :slight_smile:

I also want to say thank you to my mother, Judy Albright-Perotti, and Mrs. Purcell (another “robomom”) for doing such outstanding work for the fundraising sub-committee. We could not have made through this season without you. I truly admire your abilities to organize and coordinate the team’s fundraising efforts.

Lastly, I want to say thank you to my teammates. You are probably saying “wait a minute, this thread is for mentors and sponsors, not team members”. However, I have learned as much from being with the members of my team as I have learned from the adults on my team. In a sense, my teammates ARE mentors to me, just as the adults are. Throughout the years, the members of my team have given me much technical knowledge, which I will continue to pass on to a new generation of learners. I have learned about the dynamics of groups of people, and what makes them run better. In short, my team has been responsible for giving me many of the skills that will make me a good engineer someday - technical knowledge, as well as the ability to work with and lead a group of people.

Thank you so, so much.

I hope this coming year - my senior year - will be the best yet. With such a great group of people to work with, I am sure that this will come to pass. :slight_smile:

We got together and bought our only teacher mentor a really nice leather chair. Its a shame he won’t be able to use it since i plan on planting my kiester in it from the start of build season. :smiley:

From Team 1018:

Robert Steele and Thomas Loudermilk (aka Bob and Tom): Thanks for starting and being so involved in our team. Without you, there would be no Robodevils and I would never have discovered how great engineering is.

Stu Bloom: Thank you for your wonderful guidance in designing and construction of our robot. Thanks also for all the time that you have invested in our team. I know I appreciate it, and I’m sure Kim and Brian do too.

Chris Noble: Thanks for making electronics the best group at robotics. You oddness and your child at heart mentality helped me understand that engineers can be funny, weird, and down right crazy. Thank you also for not just giving me all the answers, but making me work as hard as I could to get the job done. Also, thanks for the free Cokes.

Also, Thank You to the parents, teachers, businesses and other team members for making this such an unforgettable year.

TEAM 25: singling everyone out would be way too hard. you basically made it possible for us to have a fighting chance at competing. And now you’re helping us go to nationals. you are truly amazing.

The Team Parents: driving, providing food, and helping pay for stuff? you rule our lives.

Our school: thanks for giving us a room to work in. although it’s just a classroom, it’s space. [please let us in the workshop next year? pleeeeeease?. i know they’re not reading this but whatev.]

Paul Kloberg: thanks for helping us and giving us the advice we desperately needed.


Chris Murray: This man has mentored with team 996 for over seven years. And I use the word “man” loosely, after dealing with us for so long he should be considered a god. He not only possesses the knowledge and wisdom that our team needs, but also the gift of gracious professionalism. A tiny paragraph is nothing compared to the monumental dedication that Mr. Murray has for the team; from giving up afternoons, to giving up spare parts in the woodshop, our main mentor has always challenged the team to think simply and work simply. This one’s for you, Murray.

Ron Meyer: Ron just joined as a mentor in 2007, but already he inspires us. This year Ron introduced us to a new concept: planning. As I recall in years past, our 'bot was assembled with no questions asked. Ron showed us that it’s o.k. to spend a couple bucks to make a working model, and this is one of the reasons that he has made all the difference to our team. With some luck (and proper alignment of the planets) Ron will return next year to continue leading us down paths of feasibility.