FIRST was started in 1989 by inventor Dean Kamen. The FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) programs aim to create passion for science and technology in students. The FIRST program encourages Gracious Professionalism and “coopertition”,
sportsmanship amongst teams even in the face of competition. Through FIRST, students build technical skills, and foster teamwork and leadership skills.
FIRST has four divisions: FIRST LEGO League Jr. (FLL Jr.), FIRST LEGO League (FLL), FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC), and the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC), serving the full spectrum of K-12 education.
In addition to building a robot, students learn to spread their passion for science and technology in our community, raise funds to support building the robot, and manage a budget. FRC caters to a variety of interests: computer science, engineering, physics, math, graphic/video artistry, business, communications, and writing. No matter where your interests are, there is something waiting for you on our team!
The MidKnight Inventors was established in the fall of 2005. The team was started by a small group of students at WW-P High School North, but expanded in 2009 to include students from High School South as well. Today, WW-P Robotics is one of the largest co-curricular activities in the district, with over 130 student team members representing both high schools in the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District, as well as a large family of other FIRST programs for grades K-8.
The MidKnight Inventors follow through on the mission of FIRST; to increase the awareness and appreciation for science and technology in our community, and to encourage STEM education in a positive, inclusive, and engaging environment for all students. Our team not only works through the technical challenges of building a competition robot each year, but also sparks enthusiasm for robotics through our various outreach events with the community. Becoming a member of the team will grant students exposure to all aspects of the organization; business planning & fundraising, project management, community service, and of course to STEM skills such as programming, mechanical design, and technical documentation. Teamwork and leadership skills are a key part of the FIRST experience, and something WWP Robotics aims to instill in every student participant through their time on our teams. The MidKnight Inventors recruit students from both WWP high schools but our shop, meeting and practice space is located in Room 308 at High School North. This space was given to us by the school district and is meant to be the ‘home’ of the team; a collaborative space where our FIRST teams work together to grow STEM alongside the WW-P curriculum. Team meetings are typically also held at HSN in the Dining Halls, but due to room restrictions or other events, may also be held at HSS or another WW-P school venue.
Co-Owner, Radiance MediaSubteams
Mechanical, Outreach & Media, Business, StrategyFavorite part of 1923:
One of the things I'm proudest of in working with the team is watching each student grow into a little bit more of 'themselves' each year - through the confidence, learning, and teamwork that FIRST inspires.
Assistant Robotics AdvisorSubteams
Mechanical, StrategyFavorite part of 1923:
Working with students to bring their ideas from strategy to design concept.
Mechanical, CADFavorite part of 1923:
Although I’m a mentor and supposed to be the one passing on best practices or knowledge, I love that I learn something new from the kids every meeting. Interacting with the passionate students and mentors re-energizes me after a long day of teaching. The Taco Bell dinners are a pretty big plus, too.
Speech/Language Pathologist, PENNMEDICINE/Princeton Health/HomeCareSubteams
Outreach, Media, BusinessFavorite part of 1923:
As one of the founding parents of Team 1923, being part of its evolution since its inception has been a privilege. No doubt, The MidKnight Family will continue to evolve with humility, respect, tenacity, spirited initiative and resourcefulness, leaving an everlasting footprint and legacy.
Silver Dollar StablesSubteams
Outreach & Media, Business, StrategyFavorite part of 1923:
Seeing this program develop and grow into such a strong and competitive team. Giving these kids the opportunity to have access to a program we could only dream of.
Research & Development Engineer, CompoSecure LLCSubteams
Mechanical, CAD, Electrical, Programming, StrategyFavorite part of 1923:
I most enjoy working side by side with students to design and build complex robots using advanced design and manufacturing techniques in an effort to foster and grow an interest in STEM.