Naatisaan Robotics FRC Championship

Yá'át'ééh (Hello in Navajo)

We are Team 6546 Naatsis’áán Robotics and we need your help. After attending the First Robotics Steamworks competition in Salt Lake City, we were invited by team 3245 to compete in the Idaho Regionals. In the Idaho Regionals we finished 9th place and won the Rookie All Star Award granting us an invitation to the First Championships in Houston, Texas. 

We would like to travel to Texas to spread our story to other teams there as we did in Salt Lake City and Boise to inspire other rookie teams that anything is possible as long as you have motivation, determination and are willing to give it you all.

Although we have boundless enthusiasm, we have limited resources. To meet our goal of competing at the championships we need to reach beyond our community and that is where you come in...


Who we are

We are Team 6546 Naatsis’áán Robotics. As the first robotics team from the Navajo Nation we have taken pride in representing the Navajo People at the First Robotics competition in our rookie season.

Our team is based in the small community of Navajo Mountain. With a total population of only 300, Navajo Mountain is situated between the mountain which gives our community its name and Piute Canyon. The Navajo Mountain community stands united behind our team, but is extremely limited in resources.  

All of our team members attend Navajo Mountain High School. 

About Our School

The school:

* 32 students enrolled

* Student Population is 100% Navajo

* Located on the Navajo Reservation 

*One of the most remote schools in the continental United States. 

*Low socioeconomic community with 100% of students qualifying for free lunch program and other government assistance programs. 


About Our Community:

Navajo Mountain is a very low socioeconomic community where the majority of the residents having no access to running water (residents often having to haul water great distances for themselves and their livestock), and roughly 50% of the households have no electrical power. Only the High School has access to the internet. 

We are a community steeped in tradition, whose members and their ancestors have dwelled in the shadow of Navajo Mountain (Naatsis’ aan or "Head of the Earth" in our native tongue) for centuries. Much of the ancient culture of the Navajo people still survives in our community. 

As a very remote community, we face many unique challenges. To acquire even the most basic of necessities, such as food and fuel, we must travel 100 miles to the nearest town with those supplies. 


Where will the money go?

Your money will help us to cover entry fee as well as travel expenses to Houston, Texas. 

Our expenses include:

*Entry fee for the event.

*Airfare from the nearest airport 350 miles from our community.

*Food for the team members as well as chaperones

*Hotel accommodations


What does this journey means to us?

This entire wondrous experience is all about defying all expectations. When we first began our journey we first needed to defy and exceed expectations within ourselves. 

The robotics program has taught us that we can do anything as long as we have the motivation and determination to succeed. Members of our team have begun to believe in themselves and look at attending college for the first time. We have been able to prove to ourselves that we can make the impossible possible. We believe that there is no adversity that is impossible to overcome. 

During the construction of the robot for the competition we faced what we felt was the impossible, build a robot in a little over a month. We tackled each adversity and slowly realized nothing was impossible. 

 

Some of the adversity we faced included:

* Due to a snow storm we did not receive the robotics kit until one week after kickoff. This cost us a full week of build time. 

* Our robot was built from scraps, since we lacked materials or a budget to buy materials. 

* The nearest hardware store with building supplies is over 170 miles away preventing us from easily obtaining parts and forcing us to fabricate everything ourselves. 

* The team and the mentor didn’t have any experience building a robot and had to learn during the build through trial and error (mostly error!).

* We lacked robust tools and had to build the robot using a cheap ratchet set, hand saws and a welder. 

* The team and the mentor had no experience in wiring electrical equipment or programming requiring us to through trial and error.

Nonetheless we overcame these challenges to complete the construction and to be ready for the competition. We exceeded all expectations finishing 36th in Utah and 9th in Idaho and won the coveted Rookie Inspiration award, Highest Rookie Seed Award, and Rookie All-Star Award.

Short and Long Term Goals:

Our short term goal is to take First Robotics mission to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders by continuing the program at Navajo Mountain and to start a Lego robotics program at our communities k-8 school. By the end of this school year we will be able to reach our short term goal. 

Our longer term goal is to use STEAM based programs to revolutionize education at both schools in our community and to start programs at other Native American schools within the Navajo Nation as well as other Nations. 

We Thank You

We will greatly appreciate any donation to this team that will allow us to travel to Texas and compete. 

We hope to influence other schools on the Navajo Nation to get into STEAM like events or programs. 

 Any overage or shortfall in our fundraising will be placed into a sustainability fund to ensure that our team continues for years to come. 

Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yj6L-9OOmRQ&spfreload=5 

Help spread the word!

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  • Duy Wang 
    • $50 
    • 31 mos
  • Lisa Smith 
    • $50 
    • 31 mos
  • Gavin Noyes 
    • $30 
    • 31 mos
  • Wilma Odell 
    • $50 
    • 31 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $20 
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Organizer

Daniel R Conrad 
Organizer
Tonalea, AZ
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