The weekend of the Woodward Dream Cruise, on August 18, 2017, the Robostangs traveled to AVL Test Systems in Plymouth, Michigan, for their annual car show. Along with the Novi robotics team, Frog Force, we displayed the 2017 First Robotics competition practice robot and our special project robot named Side Step aka Swerve to AVL’s employees and their families.

The children of the Horatio William Center from downtown Detroit also came to learn about how the robot worked and was controlled by our Robostangs volunteers. Although the weather was gloomy, everyone had a good time and learned something new. A special thank you to AVL for inviting us to attend, and to our mentors: Mrs. Steinig, Dan Nichols, and Steve Bennett for making this possible. 



The Robostangs attended the Siemens Manufacturing in America Symposium on Wednesday, March 14th and Thursday,  March 15th, 2018 .  All of the students had a great time at the event where we showcased our offseason robot, Swerve, and what FIRST Robotics is all about, with examples from our pipeline programs and students visited the STEM/Engineering Hall.

We were very excited that Siemens chose our team to participate on the “MIA Basketball Challenge” where two Siemens executives competed against a Comau one arm robot shooting baskets.  The Thunderchickens and Robostangs got to cheer for their assigned executives Raj Batra and Sascha Fischer. Also one team member of each FRC team got to help out their assigned executive.  Special thanks to Siemens for their sponsorship.

At the end of last season on May, 2017 a group of team members did a presentation at the Troy Coalition Outreach event hosted by Magna Powertrain. This presentation led the team to an  opportunity to partner with Magna Powertrain on a pilot program offering summer internships to high school seniors. During the summer, four of our senior members participated in a summer internship program held at Magna Powertrain in Troy, MI. The Robostangs were invited to  attend the Magna intern event on Tuesday  November 7th, 2017, where they participated in the college co-op wrap-up and round table discussion with Magna engineers and senior management.  

The interns did a great job of creating a strong partnership with Magna that evolved in them becoming a new team sponsor.

Magna is very interested in continuing the internship program next year and continuing to partner with the Robostangs.



Given the strategic importance of STEM education to the long-term sustainability of the GM business, GM and their employees are involved in hundreds of STEM education initiatives around the world annually. This year we had the fantastic opportunity to partner with the “GM Hispanic Initiative Team” lead by Kevin T. Bradshaw, Controller Integration Engineer at GM – Global Propulsion Systems in a “pilot project”. They conducted a series of workshops varying from college readiness to Girls in STEM. We want to share this valuable information with the community.

Mr. Hoshaw, one of our Engineering Mentors, provided and incredible opportunity to tour the facilities of his employer, Harman. The trip took place on Wednesday, December 6, 2017. About 20 team members attended. There were three buildings included in the tour:

The Harman’s Prototype factory, where students were able to observe the line running and they witnessed the electronics assembly process for an automotive radio/display.  They also observed the assembly of premium loudspeakers. 

The Harman’s North American headquarters for Automotive, a new, state of the art engineering facility which houses over 1000 employees. In this stop, the Robostangs  visited several engineering areas and spoke with electrical engineers, mechanical engineers, transducer engineers, validation engineers and benchmarking engineers.  They enjoyed a demonstration of some of Harman’s tech including active noise cancellation and premium reference audio systems. 

The Harman’s Validation Lab, where students learned that in order for a product to survive in the harsh, automotive environment, engineers must follow robust design standards and test their products thoroughly.  In the Harman Validation Lab, they witnessed high/low temperature, thermal shock, vibration, EMC, acoustic and a variety of other tests.


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