Invitation to Be Part of the Orlando FIRST Regional Planning Committee

The Orlando FIRST Regional Planning Committee (RPC) is reaching out into the Florida FIRST community seeking new committee members and volunteers from among team mentors, supporters and alumni.  Please reply to Ms. Harer at the address below by Thursday, July 19, if you’ d like to volunteer with the committee, and attend the July 21st meeting in Orlando, or if you have any questions about the Orlando Regional Planning Committee. 

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The Orlando FIRST Regional Planning Committee (RPC) is gearing up for another exciting year of robotics, culminating in the March 2013 FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Regional Competition at the University of Central Florida Arena.  We are seeking new members of the Committee to help with planning this annual event so we can continue to make it the success it has been over the years.

2013 will be our 15th anniversary of holding a Regional in Florida.  Our first ones were at Kennedy Space Center before moving to our current location.  FIRST continues to grow and we now have a second Regional in South Florida, while the number of high school FRC teams in our State also continues to grow.  The Orlando Regional is very popular among the teams and fills up to the maximum 63 team very early in the registration process.  Teams come from throughout the US as well as from other countries.  This past year, we had teams from Germany, Australia and the Dominican Republic.

Some of you have worked with teams for a number of years but have also expressed an interest in becoming more involved in the Regional Competition planning as well.  You are familiar with the concentrated effort required to put on the 3-day event.  The Committee works all year round to assure it is a positive experience for the teams, team mentors, the public and volunteers alike.  If you would like to become involved with that effort, we would like to have you join the Committee.

Attached is an application asking for some basic contact information and a summary of experience and interest areas.  Please complete it and return it to me at kharer@earthlink.net .

We are planning a meeting for Saturday, July 21, at one of the Disney facilities.  We will start at noon with sandwiches and drinks provided by the RPC to discuss plans for the coming year and the outlying years.  We have a number of topics listed on the application form that we will be brainstorming ideas for, which is why I’ve asked for your preferences in areas to work.  We will be breaking down into smaller groups for the brainstorming sessions and having several running concurrently.  Each attendee will be able to participate in at least 2 sessions.  Each group will prioritize their ideas and report back to the full group.  Each participant will be asked to serve on at least one of the RPC subcommittees at that point, based on what you’ve heard about RPC activities and what your interests are.  We should finish around 3:00-4:00.

Finally, we want to make more of an effort to involve team alumni in Regional planning activities.  If you keep a contact list of your recent graduates, we would like to invite them to participate in the July 21 meeting as well.  The students have a lot to offer and we want to keep them involved as much as possible while they pursue their educational goals.

I know giving up a Saturday is a significant donation of time, especially during the summer, so I want to thank you in advance for doing this.  I look forward to working with you on the Committee.

Kathleen Harer

Orlando FIRST Regional Planning Committee

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