Now that will be very hard to beat; unless we can find Chuck Norris.
The expresion on the President’s face from the picture from Getty Images is one of “that chandelier costs about as much as 5 of thoes robots…and you missed it by an inch…”
Booking Regionals, Championships, Travel Expences, and other expences=$30,000-$40,000
The chance to scare the living daylights out of the President and the secret service at once=Priceless
wow simply amazing! Way to go moe!
To MOE - Congratulations! I know that you portrayed the spirit of the FIRST community well =)
To Dave - You are speaking as if you were present at this event. I am curious to know if you made any comments regarding the pronunciation of the word “nuclear”:yikes:
Wow, congrats to all the teams that went.
I can hardly think of any better ambassador of FIRST that team 365. Simply amazing.
congrats once again.
More like “as much as 100 of those robots…” but who is counting?
A big congrats to MOE. To everyone behind the scenes that helped make this happen, Thank you. Thank you from the entire FIRST community, this is amazing press and recognition of the highest caliber. This will be a memory like no other for all of those in the White House today.
Congratz 365!!! You’ve achieved one of my dreams. There are some really great pictures. Let’s get the President to Nationals before his term is over.
Alright, who goosed the president? :eek:
I’ll get some more pictures up later today. Thanks to 768 and 116 for “hosting” the reception at the Cannon Office Bldg. (attached to the Capital where a lot of Congress have their offices) after the White House visit. And thanks to 768 for the special buttons they made for us! Unfortunately no congressperson showed up, although many sent staffers. I was told that they are rarely in DC on Mondays. And thanks to Dave Lavery for posting the pics so quickly!
Now, the White House. It was very exciting. If you picture the standard view of the WH with the portico and pillars in front, we were in the room just inside the balcony on the second floor. MOE was set up for a demo there, with FLL set up in the East Room (with the famous portrait of George Washington) and FVC in the room on the West side, but I’m not sure what that is called. We had a lot of time to wander the whole area including the Green room and Red room and to look at all the art work. Portraits of most of the presidents are there, including the well known portrait of JFK (with his arms crossed an looking down) and the bust of Lincoln.
They did put down carpeting over the marble floor for the robot, and yes, we did almost hit the very expensive crystal chandelier. First Bush talked to Dean, Woodie, Dave L, Paul Abele, and some other FIRST people. Then he came out where we had been standing for at least 20 minutes, posed on the stair case (with a guard behind us to keep anyone from wandering upstairs). He greeted us, said he had a nice talk with Dean about his latest invention, the water purifier, and mentioned how he fell off a Segway. They they posed with us and Dean said we had a cheer for him (which startled him quite a bit!). Our Chairman’s team gave a very short presentation in which he listened graciously, but only showed interest when they mentioned our literacy program. Our drive team then demo’ed the robot, after which Bush took over the controls. While our driver drove the robot Bush controlled the gripper and picked up a ring and hung it. he then left to see the FLL team.
There was a horde of photographers but unfortunately we weren’t allowed to take video. Security as you can imagine was extremely tight. The only items allowed in were car keys, wallet, and cameras. No purses, lipsticks, combs, or anything pointed such as pencils. And if can look closely you can see we are all wearing our medals which of course set off the metal detectors.
It was an exciting day but tiring day - we didn’t get back until around 11. I’m back at work but as you can see haven’t done much yet, so I’ll end it here.
First off, a HUGE Thank you, goes out to all of the FIRST personnel, who made the Washington DC visit a success. MOE 365 worked most closely with John Marchiony, Chief Marketing Officer, and Carol Kauffman, Regional Director. It took many people to organize and execute this event.
MOE’s day started with a bus ride to DC on a gorgeous blue-sky-and-sunny day. We took a short walk to the Capitol where we had some photos taken. We then joined other FIRST teams being recognized, FVC 3053, “Occam’s Engineers” from Mendham, New Jersey and FLL 1677 Access 9" from South Bend, Indiana for lunch at Union Station.
Then it was off by bus to the White House. MOEzilla and the FVC and FLL bots needed to be in DC this past Friday for security inspections. The bots spent their weekend in an office not far from Laura bush’s office.
After meeting up with the FIRST delegation, led by Dean Kamen, Woodie Flowers, Paul Gudonis, John Abele, and Dave Lavery, we had about an hour to wander freely around the Cross Room / Grand Foyer, Blue Room, Red Room, Green Room, East Room, and State Dining Room. These are awesome rooms with many Presidential portraits and great views of DC out of the windows. We took loads of photos.
We spent about 30 minutes getting our large MOE group organized for the photo with the President (Thanks, Carol Kauffman!!!). He only spent a total of less than 10 minutes with us, so everything had to be timed and efficient. As you can see in the photo attached, student team members wore MOE jerseys and adult mentors wore business attire with MOE green highlights (ties, scarves, jackets, etc.). We spent about 10-15 minutes working with the White House staff to determine if and when we could do the MOE cheer.
The President finally arrived after a brief meeting with FIRST leadership. He was very friendly and down-to-earth, admitting his incident with a Segway within minutes of our interaction. First were the photos. At the end of the photos, we did the MOE cheer. He was supposed to be ready for it, but the amplification of the sound in the room caused him to jump. It was great.
After that, our Chairman’s Award presenters (Andrea, Will, and Eric) described what our team has done to earn the award. Our competition team (Matt, Morgan, and Kevin) then grabbed a keeper tube and drove the bot over to the President. In the fun photo that is on Getty, the bot stops short of the team. The students are looking up because our arm is raised and is literally inches away from the bottom of the “very expensive” chandelier that Dave Lavery mentioned. Our driver got inches away from hitting it two times. Needless to say, our team and the White House staff were holding our collective breath.
The President then got a chance to take control of our arm/gripper controls. He collected a tube, raised the arm all the way up, and (with help from Morgan, our arm driver) released the tube on the top spider leg of a mini-rack we built for the event.
Andrea Agra, our Team Captain, then presented President Bush with a MOE jersey with “Bush” printed on the back.
The President was very congratulatory of the teams and what FIRST has done to further the interest of science and technology in our youth. He also was impressed with the level of technlogy FIRST robots in general contained. Though our brief interaction, he seemed very genuine and friendly.
Many photos were taken of the event, but video and audio were not allowed. So, the best you can hope for are the fun photos that are being posted and some other stories.
It was a terrific day. Thanks FIRST.
What? What did you do about tools? (Or is your robot so well behaved that it doesn’t make a mess on the carpet )
Also, did the Secret Service have to inspect the robot before allowing it to enter?
Great stories!! Congratulations, MOE–you made us all proud to be a part of FIRST!
I’m very impressed! You guys are an amazing team and truly are a role model for other FIRST teams!
Congrats again on being this year’s Championship Chairman’s Award winners!
(and Congrats to the Vex and FLL teams as well!)
Yes, the Secret Service did want plenty of time to inspect the equipment. All the robots with limited tools and minifields were driven down to the White House on Friday by a mentor, Lou Rosanio (the FVC and FLL teams shipped their robots to us, we used our own FLL and FVC fields). Lou said they were very interested in them - beyond security concerns - but the funniest part is that MOEzilla didn’t fit in the storage area they designated, so he spent the weekend in the First Lady’s office! Unfortunately we didn’t get pictures.
Speaking of pictures, I’m in the process of posting some that I have with me, so check in a couple of hours.
MOE, you guys truly deserve all the recognition you have received. I have yet to encounter a team with as much zeal and GP as you all. Thank you for helping bring more attention to FIRST and its participants (not only with all your acheivements, but with those BRIGHT shirts!).
Congratulations and here’s to many more successful years!
(And extra props has to be given to the driver who almost took out the chandelier- it made for some excellent photos. )
I think the look on the face of the woman next to the President is the best because you can see the panic in her eyes.
The Women next to Bush is Carol Kauffman (FIRST Regional Director) and the student is Andrea Agra the 2007 MOE student caption.
Actually, I was told there were 6 members of Congress, including one Senator.
Many were at a funeral yesterday in California.
The Director of the National Science Foundation was there. As well as many high level representative from the Patent Office, NIST and the Dept. of Homeland Security.
There were also many important staffers there. Many came after being visited by the FLL and FVC teams during the morning.
Love the White House pics!