Western Engineering’s FIRST robotics club (WE MARS) aims, as an organization, to inspire members and the public to become more involved in the field of science and technology through robotics. The team has two main goals:
WE MARS’ first goal is to challenge its members to take engineering design to the next level on the international stage. In order to so WE MARS is competing in the European Rover Challenge 2017.
WE MARS’ second goal is to engage youth in robotics through FIRST Robotics and community events. This includes mentoring teams at the high school level as well as running local competitions for students from SK to grade 12. The newest competition to be welcomed into London will be the London FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) District this spring. Our high school teams will compete in a cooperative robotics competition and vi for a spot at the District Championship. Please see the events tab for more information.
In mentoring teams, we provide technical, non-technical or managerial expertise and moral support to the high school students and teachers exploring the world of robotics. FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Canada, founded in 2002, reaches over 7,000 Canadian students.
This past year, partnering with Western Engineering, WE MARS directly supported three regional high school teams as part of our ‘Incubator initiative’ as well as 6 other local high school teams. We provide the opportunity for London youth to participate in extra-curricular activities that they otherwise would not have been able to take part in due to various barriers including lack of teacher support. WE MARS volunteers time to assist high school robotics teams in their journey to build a 120 lb. robot in 6 weeks. Given the difficult challenge of building the robots, we are extremely proud of how all our high school teams have performed in competition. Continuing our initiative, we plan to reach out to more high schools in the London area during the upcoming seasons and invite them to get experience on our incubator robotics team and encourage them to start their own teams while we continue to support existing teams.