Founded in 2000, The Blair Robot Project has been competing in FIRST FRC and spreading outreach within the Maryland community.
The Blair Robot Project, Team 449, is a US FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) team. Team 449 is based out of Montgomery Blair High School located in Silver Spring, Maryland. Team 449 prides itself in having student members that participate in all aspects necessary to compete in FRC competitions, such as designing, wiring, programming, and building the robot.
In order to meet the requirements and challenges of the FRC, Team 449 teaches students the technical skills involved in creating an awesome robot regardless of prior experiences. During Preseason, the focus is teaching new members skills in their area of choice. These new team members may choose to learn about one of the 5 diverse roles involved in building the robot by joining sub-teams specializing in mechanics, programming, electronics, tech, and public relations. Both returning members and mentors help these rookie members in learning the necessary skills to contribute to Team 449. Not only are these skills essential to participating in the FIRST Robotics Competition, they will also serve the members in whatever career paths they choose to take.
Team 449 also gives its members the opportunity to learn how to manage projects in a professional manner. Each sub-team must create and implement their designs quickly and efficiently, since the build season for FRC is only six and a half weeks long. The mentors teach students how to approach problems when development time is limited and also give input on designs. Finally, Team 449 teaches students how to work together in groups. Every year during the game team members learn how essential coordinated teamwork is.
Outside of the build and competition season, we focus on reaching out to our local community. One of the core values of FIRST is to spread interest in science, technology, engineering, and math. We demonstrate our robot at various public events, within our school, and in the community. These outreach efforts not only allows us to spread interest in science and engineering, but also give our members a chance to develop their public speaking skills and help generate interest about science and engineering.