FTC: Team Email Archive

Below is an archive of the team blasts:

Newsletters via MailChimp

June 16, 2016

June 1, 2016

May 18, 2016

April 13, 2016

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This message was sent to coaches, volunteers and friends of FIRST Tech Challenge on June

In this newsletter:

  1. Register with FIRST for the 2016-2017 Season
  2. Coach Professional Development: August 1-3, 2016
  3. Kick-Off for 2016-2017 Season
  4. Volunteer Professional Development: Oct. 15, 2016
  5. Stories of Inspiration
  6. Team Grants are Open!

1. Register with FIRST

Team registration with FIRST for the 2016-2017 FIRST Tech Challenge season is open! Team registration for all FIRST programs, are now centrally done through the FIRST website. If you have a FIRST Account, click Log In in the top right corner and it will be directed the dashboard.

Remember: 
If you are waiting to hear about the status of a grant that you applied for, you may register, but do not submit payment in the Storefront. Unfortunately, grants cannot be credited after check-out. Just wait to pay until you hear about the status of your grant application.

If you have any questions about registering, please send an email to ftc.iowa@gmail.com

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2. Coach Professional Development

We are very fortunate to be able to offer a three-day coach training in partnership with Rockwell Collins and the Kirkwood Regional Center at The University of Iowa!

  • Date: August 1-3, 2016
  • Location: Kirkwood Regional Center, 2301 Oakdale Blvd, Coralville, Iowa
  • Hotel block: AmericInn, 2597 Holiday Rd, Coralville (319-625-2400) for a $63.95 + tax/night rate. Cut off date is June 30, 2016.
  • Topics for Agenda: Here*
  • Registration Costs: none**
  • Pre-Registration is required: Here
  • *Note: The topics for agenda may change. If you have a topic you'd like to learn more about, or even want more information, please email ftc.iowa@gmail.com

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3. Kick-Off for the 2016-2017 Season

For the 2016-2017 Season, we are piloting a new kind of event for Kick-Off! We will be doing one central location for the event with several remote locations! 

  • Breakout sessions and game reveal will be streamed remotely.
  • Local sites can host own workshops about programming, fundraising, volunteer recruitment, etc.
  • This gives an opportunity for league teams to start discussing or finalizing dates of meet events.

If you would like to host a remote site, please complete this form so we can promote it!

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4. Volunteers: Save the Date - Oct. 15, 2016 Training

We will be having a Volunteer Training for volunteers on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016 in Des Moines, Iowa. Volunteer roles that are included are: Field Tech Advisor, Head Referee/Referee, Scorekeeper, Judge Advisor/Judge, Game Announcer and maybe a few others. We do ask that all attendees register for the Oct. 15 training event.

This training will supplement the materials provided by FIRST and volunteers are encouraged to attend. It will provide an opportunity to create consistency among regions within Iowa. Prior to attending the training, all volunteers should sign-up with FIRST in VIMS (Volunteer Information Management System), approve the consent form and pass the background check.

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5. We are seeking Stories of Inspiration

Do you have a story of inspiration? Has FIRST made a difference in the life of a child? Please share those stories with us! We'd love to feature them in an upcoming newsletter! (We'd love to have a picture too!)

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6. Coaches: Team Grants

We are very fortunate to be able to offer team grants, sponsored by Rockwell Collins and John Deere!  Applicants must complete the online application. (Note: don't "check-out"/complete the registration with FIRST until you hear about the status of these grants). These grants typically cover the cost of the robot kit of parts for a new team and/or FIRST Registration fees for a returning/veteran team. Remember, it is important for teams to do a bit of fundraising through community outreach.

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This message was sent on June 1, 2016.

1. Team Grants for 2016/2017 are open!
2. Register with FIRST
3. FTC-Iowa Professional Development

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1. Team Grants for 2016/2017 are open!

We are very fortunate to have a commitment from Rockwell Collins & John Deere to provide team grants for the 2016/2017 season! A few things to keep in mind:

  • John Deere supports teams within a 50 mile radius of one of their manufacturing facilities. If your team is within a 50 mile radius, please apply for a John Deere FTC team grant. If you are not within a 50 mile radius of a John Deere facility, please apply for a Rockwell Collins grant.
  • Teams will not be allowed to receive both Rockwell Collins and John Deere grants. The John Deere & Rockwell Collins grants cover the same things.

If you would like to apply for either the John Deere or Rockwell Collins grants, please complete this application.

But, the grants don't stop there! FIRST is also offering team grants. For more information, including the application, please check out their grant website.

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2. Register with FIRST

Have you noticed, FIRST has transitioned to a new registration system? You can access the new registration system by visiting the FIRST website (firstinspires.org and click on "log in" on the top right) or follow this link. You will need to complete the Consent form.

If you have any issues registering your team, please send a note to FIRST at ftcteams@firstinspires.org

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3. FTC-Iowa Professional Development

We are fortunate to be able to partner with Rockwell Collins and the Kirkwood Regional Center at The University of Iowa and host an annual Coach Professional Development. Here are the details:

Date: August 1-3, 2016
Location: Kirkwood Regional Center, 2301 Oakdale Blvd, Coralville, Iowa
Hotel block: AmericInn, 2597 Holiday Rd, Coralville (319-625-2400) for a $63.95 + tax/night rate. Cut off date is June 30, 2016.
Topics for Agenda: Here*
Registration Costs: none**
Registration Link: Here
*Note: The topics for agenda may change. If you have a topic you'd like to learn more about, or even want more information, please reply to this email.

**We are working to get credit issued for this PD. There will be a cost associated if credit is earned.

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This message was sent on May 18, 2016.

Hello, Coaches:

Congratulations to many of you as you complete another academic year! A few quick items today:

1. Team Grants
2. FTC Professional Development
3. 2016-2017 Event Calendar
4. Updated FIRST Registration System & Coach Transition
5. State Fair
6. Air Force Opportunity
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1. Team Grants

During this time of year, we are working hard to secure team grants from our fantastic corporate sponsors. More information about team grants will be sent out before June 1. Please remember, if you chose to register with FIRST, do not Pay Registration Fee/Order Product until your team grant has been applied.

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2. FTC Professional Development

We are fortunate to be able to partner with Rockwell Collins and the Kirkwood Regional Center at The University of Iowa and host an annual Coach Professional Development. Here are the details:

Date: August 1-3, 2016
Location: Kirkwood Regional Center, 2301 Oakdale Blvd, Coralville, Iowa
Hotel block: AmericInn, 2597 Holiday Rd, Coralville (319-625-2400) for a $63.95 + tax/night rate. Cut off date is June 30, 2016.
Topics for Agenda: Here*
Registration Costs: none**
Registration Link: Here
*Note: The topics for agenda may change. If you have a topic you'd like to learn more about, or even want more information, please reply to this email.

**We are working to get credit issued for this PD. There will be a cost associated if credit is earned.

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3. 2016-2017 Event Calendar
Here is a brief summary for 2016-2017 season:
May 18, 2016: Registration will open via the FIRST website
Aug 1-3, 2016: Professional Development for coaches and volunteers in Coralville, Iowa (see above)
Sept. 10, 2016: Kick-Off (more info to come!)
Dec. 17, 2016: League Championship (working on the location/s)
Jan 7, 2017: League Championship (working on the location/s)
Jan. 14, 2017: League Championship (working on the location/s)
Jan. 21, 2017: League Championship (working on the location/s)
Jan. 28, 2017: League Championship (working on the location/s)
Feb. 4, 2017: Super Qualifier*
Feb. 11, 2017: Super Qualifier*
Feb. 24/25: FTC-Iowa Championship, Coralville
March, 2017: North Super Regional, Cedar Rapids

*A Super Qualifier is a one-day, 24 team tournament in which teams must advance from the League Championship. The Super Qualifier provides an opportunity for more teams to advance out of the League Championships to the next level of competition. The Super Qualifier will advance teams into the FTC-Iowa Championship. We will use the Advancement Criteria listed in Game Manual Part 1 for team advancing from League Championship to Super Qualifier and from the Super Qualifier to the FTC-Iowa Championship and from the FTC-Iowa Championship to the North Super Regional.

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4. Updated FIRST Registration System & Coach Transition

As of today, May 18th, coaches may now register with FIRST via their new FIRST Team Registration system - which makes it easier if you coach multiple teams!

Once you log in (using your previous TIMS info), you'll see a list of teams you are listed as coach or assistant coach. You will need to complete the consent form and may need to update the information for your YPP.

Will your team be transitioning to a new coach for next season? To help the transition, please let us know and add the new coach into your team's account as soon as you know who the new coach will be. As a reminder, the contact information that you provide to FIRST (email addresses, phone numbers & physical addresses) is what we use as our primary source. Please make sure that information is accurate and up-to-date.  Thank you.

*Please note: as mentioned above, if you are applying for any grants, do not "pay registration/order product" until your grant appears on your account.

In Iowa, we do ask that teams register with FIRST no later than September 2 - this will help us get a great start on generating the leagues.

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5. State Fair
Looking for outreach? We have a great outreach opportunity during August! We are fortunate to be able to have a presence at the Iowa State Fair on several days. We are looking for teams that are interested in representing FTC. Please respond to this email if your team is interested. We will need a count of students to be able to get admission tickets.

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6. Air Force Opportunity

The U.S. Air Force develops leaders of great character and vision. For the 5th year, the U.S. Air Force is offering a unique three-day leadership program providing FIRST® Mentors with hands on leadership training taught by Air Force personnel. The event consists of lectures, team building exercises and tours of the Air Force Academy and a local Air Force Base at no cost to those selected. The Air Force will select a group of 25 teachers and mentors from FIRST® Tech Challenge and FIRST® Robotics Competition teams who are helping inspire today’s youth to become the technical leaders of tomorrow.

When:  Mid to late July 2016; dates to be confirmed and posted on this webpage in April 2016. Dates are subject to change based on Air Force operational missions/priorities.

Where:  Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs and an Air Force Base in the Colorado Springs area.

Requirements:

  • FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition Mentors who are K-12 teachers who live within the continental United States.
  • Must be willing to commit to the full workshop.
  • Must be able to travel to the event from within the U.S.
  • Must not have participated in this leadership experience in previous years.
  • Must not have involvement or affiliation with other military branches.

How to apply:

  • Complete the on-line application form.
  • Applications must be submitted by May 20, 2016.
  • As part of your application, you will have the opportunity to describe in 300 words or less how you have found a better way to get students excited about science and technology, and what innovative techniques you use to help students learn and stay motivated.


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Thank you all and have a great end to the school year!

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This message was sent on April 13, 2016.

Hello, Coaches:
My team and I would like to thank each and every one of you for a great FTC season. Thank you to all of the time & dedication you spent with your students and inspiring them!

As we wrap up the 2015-2016 Res-Q season, we are looking ahead to the 2016-2017 season. Please view the items below.

1. FTC as a course!
2. Seeking League Administrators for 2016-2017
3. Calendar for 2016-2017
4. Its time to do fundraising!
5. Coach transition during the Off-Season

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1. FTC as a course!
Does your school offer FTC as a course for your students?
In partnership with Intelitek, Pitsco Education and FIRST, we are looking for a few teachers who implement FTC in the classroom to be a pilot site of a new FTC curriculum. Attached is a one-pager describing the project. There is funding available to cover the expenses.
If you are interested in serving as a pilot for the 2016-2017, please complete FTC in the Classroom form no later than May 1, 2016.

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2. Seeking League Administrators for 2016-2017
In order to get a running start for next season, we'd like to start the discussion with those coaches/mentors who are interested in being League Administrators for the 2016-2017. Attached is some information about the role of League Administrator. After reviewing the attached, and if you are interested, please complete the League Administrator Google Form by May 1, 2016.  We'd like to start the planning by early June.

Item to note: As many of you know, due to limited team grants for next year, field elements will not automatically be sent to teams. One of the benefits of being a League Administrator, a full set of field elements will be sent to League Administrators.

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3. Calendar for 2016-2017
Here is a brief summary for 2016-2017 season:
Mid-May, 2016: Registration will open via the TIMS website.
Aug 1-3, 2016: Professional Development for coaches and volunteers in Coralville, Iowa (more info to come!)
Mid-Sept, 2016: Kick-Off (more info to come!)
Dec. 17, 2016: League Championship
Jan 7, 2017: League Championship
Jan. 14, 2017: League Championship
Jan. 21, 2017: League Championship
Jan. 28, 2017: League Championship
Feb. 4, 2017: Super Qualifier*
Feb. 11, 2017: Super Qualifier*
Feb. 24/25: FTC-Iowa Championship, Coralville
March, 2017: North Super Regional, Cedar Rapids

*A Super Qualifier is a one-day, 24 team tournament in which teams must advance from the League Championship. The Super Qualifier provides an opportunity for more teams to advance out of the League Championships to the next level of competition. The Super Qualifier will advance teams into the FTC-Iowa Championship. We will use the Advancement Criteria listed in Game Manual Part 1 for team advancing from League Championship to Super Qualifier and from the Super Qualifier to the FTC-Iowa Championship and from the FTC-Iowa Championship to the North Super Regional.

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4. Its time to do fundraising!
The off-season is an excellent time to do team fundraising and start to work on your team's business plan! Please review many of the FTC Fundraising Resources on the FIRST Inspires Website.

If you have great fundraising ideas, please share!

5. Coach transition during the Off-Season
Will your team be transitioning to a new coach for next season? To help the transition, please let us know. As a reminder, the contact information provided to FIRST (email addresses, phone numbers & physical addresses) that we use as our primary source. Please make sure that information is accurate and up-to-date.  Thank you. (Click on "Log In" in the upper right hand corner.)
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Again, thank you for a tremendous Res-Q season and on behalf of the FTC-Iowa team, we look forward to working with you next season.