The Archytas FIRST Robotics team, out of Bethel, is working on raising money so that it can compete in the New England District Championships April 13-16.
The central Vermont squad has close to 20 members from 10 towns and five different regional schools (The Sharon Academy, Woodstock, Randolph, White River Valley, and VAST).
This year the team was awarded First Robotics 2022 Gracious professionalism award at the Greater Boston District Event. It also made it to the semi-finals in that competition.
Next, the team hopes to attend the New England District Championships April 13-16 in Springfield, Massachusetts. However, more fundraising is needed.
“Our team’s success relies on community support. To ensure that every interested student in our community has access to the opportunities that FIRST Robotics provides, we do not charge families for participation. All of our costs are covered by fundraisers and charitable giving,” according to a individual appeal letter, which team members give out to possible donors and sponsors.
The program costs approximately $1,250 per student (including registration, materials, supplies, and travel). Then championship competitions add to that, just about doubling the cost per student.
Clara Shortle a sophomore at Woodstock High School from West Bridgewater is the head of business for the team.
“Our goal is to make sure that our team is completely funded by donations and fundraising and grants, in order to make it more accessible,” Shortle said. “Our members do not pay a dime for their participation. The team is youth led, with mentors lending a hand in the practical application of team member designs and goals.”