After months of planning, FRC Team 135’s Mission to Engineer team hopped on a plane to sunny Orlando, Florida to present at the Assistive Technology Industry Association (ATIA) conference. The ATIA conference is a gathering of Assistive Technology vendors, Occupational Therapists (OT), Physical Therapists (PT), educators, and people with a wide range of disabilities.

The largest attraction at this conference was the Exhibit Hall where hundreds of companies (including Google, Microsoft, and AbleNet) promoted their assistive technology devices and software to other vendors and medical professionals. Browsing around the Exhibit Hall, we were able to learn a lot about the current products on the market in the assistive technology community and how they can be implemented into people’s daily lives.

The heart and soul of ATIA, however, is the abundance of presentations that are held throughout the week. Being one of the two FRC teams presenting, Team 135 was honored with a 90 minute presentation slot at this highly esteemed conference to present our program, Mission to Engineer. With an involved audience, we were able to te ll our assistive technology story starting from Hand of Grace (2015), going all the way to current day with Innovations for Isaiah (2019). We were also able to promote our ever growing network of FIRST Robotics Competition teams able to help us with our cause.

On the final day of the conference, our partner ATMakers (founded by Bill Binko), invited us back to the Exhibit Hall with a booth at their Maker Day 2.0. This is a widely loved part of ATIA where attendees get to learn more about what goes into making many of the simple devices assistive technology uses. Makers Making Change held the “learn to solder” booth, while others held booths about instamorph and 3D printing. Team 135’s Mission to Engineer team held a presentation booth with a demo of our outreach robot named “Kiwi.” We talked to a lot of incredibly supportive attendees, and we’re excited to return to ATIA next year.

Click here to learn more about our experience in 2018.

Categories: Blog

Related Posts


Polyester Projector Class Meetings

On August 29-31, Team 135 used the polyester projector to hype up the crowd at the sophomore-senior class meetings that students attended. From the beginning of the school year to the first class meeting, we Read more...


Horizon Girl Scouts

The Horizon Girl Scouts, and a few boy scouts, asked us to come in on November 20th in order to teach the kids about robotics and meet the requirements for their badges. While there, we Read more...


Community FIRST – Barnes & Noble

On November 28th, 2018 Penn Robotics got invited to take part in an international event called Community FIRST. This event shows that the worldwide FIRST community is connected and they cooperate together to be able Read more...