Olivia Adam
Senior/ Media Team
This is my second year of FRC. I was apart of the awards team 2016-2017 and designed our t-shirts last season. I love the team bonding and work ethic this big family has. FIRST not only represents engineering but also the aspect of building a team. It's a very competitive and amazing experience that you just can't get enough of. I've been swimming for 14 years and apart of the Irish Aquatics Swim Club. I'm interested in graphic design, engineering, and hanging with my friends.
Kelsey Anderson
Senior/ Awards Team
I was apart of the 2016-2017 Awards Team. I love that FIRST brings together people from all different backgrounds and different talents to create something awesome. I'm interested in foreign films, 80's music, and coffee (lots of coffee).
Evan Smith
Senior/ Software Team
I did FTC last year. I like FIRST because I get to experience new things and learn more about computer science. I'm interested in computer science, game development, music creating, video editing, and animation.
Shino Antony
Senior/ Media Team
I was apart of the FRC team and I designed the Pit last year. I like FIRST because it's a really fun experience. I'm interested in ultimate frisbee.
Mackenzie Richards
Senior/ Awards Team
I was on the FRC Team 135 last season. I really like the unity of the program about FIRST. People are brought together within communities as well as from across the world, all sharing interests and the common goal of becoming the best we can be. Outside of robotics I am on the swim team at Penn. I have also been in choir for all for years. Outside of school, I regularly volunteer at my church.
Thomas Blankenship
Senior/ Design Team
I was involved in the FRC 2017 design and build team, FTC 2015 build and drive team, and FLL 2012 build and drive team. I really like FIRST because of building a robot with other students with similar and different talents, then competing and testing the capability and performance of the robot. I'm interested in drum corps, marching band, jazz band, and cars.
Michaela Bronstetter
Senior/ Media Team
I like how challenging and fun FIRST makes robotics throughout everything we do during the year. I'm interested in softball and powderpuff.
Griffin Peters
Senior/ Design Team
I've helped set up for the robotics team once or twice in the past. I like how it integrates much more than just stem, it makes students lead and set up their own events, manage schedules, learn business techniques, contact and communicate with businesses, all for the greater good of the team. I'm interested in working with future teams at a collage level, student loans, internships with local businesses, and creative outlets.
Johnathon Laatz
Senior/ Build Team
I've done one year of FTC and this is my second year of FRC. I enjoy the challenge, camaraderie, and the practicality of it all. Outside of robotics, I'm interested in lacrosse and hanging with friends.
Brian Yu
Senior/ Build Team
I enjoy the programs and systems that it puts in place. I'm interested in chess, gaming, meditation, reading, writing, dancing, etc.
Italia Fields
Senior/ Build Team
I did FRC last year. I enjoy the team environment. Outside of robotics, I'm interested in volleyball.
David Li
Senior/ Software Team
I did FLL (1 year), FTC (1 year), and this is my second year of FRC. I like that FIRST programs give students opportunities to explore and cultivate skills in not only STEM, but a variety of areas such as community involvement, business and fundraising, relationships. I enjoy playing music, particularly the piano and guitar. I'm also interested in travel and different cultures.
Maguire Burton
Senior/ Build Team
I've done five years FLL, two years FTC, and two years FRC. I like FIRST because of how it inspires kids to get more into math, science, and technology in a fun way. That's the reason I've been a part of it for so long. I enjoy watching movies and hanging out with friends.
Kait Kelsey
Senior/ Build Team
This is my second year on FRC. I enjoy participating in FIRST because gives me the opportunity to create solutions to real problems in the community. Outside of Robotics I enjoy playing lacrosse, being in IML, Freshman Mentoring, working, and sleeping.
Alex Simmons
Senior/ Build Team
I have done one year of FTC and this is my second year of FRC. Outside of robotics I am in Boy Scouts and I am interested in computers.
Daniel Dautel
Senior/ Build Team
This is my second year of FRC. I like FIRST because the experience you gain from not only building the robots but the internship part as well. Outside of Robotics I am in Boy Scouts and interested in writing.
Eric McDonald
Senior/ Build Team
I've done one year FLL, two years FTC, and one year FRC. FIRST has been a great opportunity to introduce students to multiple divisions of engineering. Outside of robotics I'm interested in sculpture, economics, German, and Boy Scouts.
Logan Steinike
Senior/ Design Team
I haven't officially been affiliated with FIRST until this year, but I have helped with some Team 135 Projects in the past. I am interested in art, photography, graphic design, cars, and most of all, racing.
Alyssa McNarney
Senior/ Build Team
I was a Dean's list semi -finalist (2017). I like FIRST because of the team aspect. I'm interested in Chemistry Olympiad and research at ND.
Josh Hinsey
Senior/ Software Team
I like FIRST because of the competitions. I'm interested in playing and preforming music such as in marching band.
Parker Smithberger
Senior/ Software Team
I"ve done one year FTC and one year FRC. I like FIRST because of the competitiveness. Outside of robotics, I'm interested in playing video games.
Jack Wheet
Senior/ Build Team
I've done three years of FLL, one year of FTC, and one year of FRC. I like FIRST because it brings students, regardless of background, together to strive towards a common goal. Also, it lets me practice problem solving and engineering in a way that is fun and different from how I normally do. I'm interested in fire eating, puzzle/logic games, rock climbing, and kayaking.
Drason Chow
Senior/ Software Team
This is my second year of FRC. I enjoy FIRST because of lot's of application and hands on work unlike other classes. Really allows me to integrate knowledge from across the broad. I'm interested in writing novels, mathematics, and game design.
Daniel Nilov
Junior/ Software Team
I've done one year of FTC. In my opinion, one of the greatest things about FIRST is the student culture surrounding it. The community as a whole is very welcoming to new members and very supportive of other teams in the spirit of friendly competition. The FIRST community exemplifies what cooperation and a positive mentality can accomplish in STEM. Outside of Robotics I enjoy playing guitar and co-running a small online business with my friends. I am also in several extracurricular at Penn High School and am president of a club, The Technology Student Association, on to local and state level. I would like to go into civil engineering.
McKenna Hillsdon-Smith
Junior/ Software Team
I've done one year FLL and two years FTC. I like FIRST because of how the programs mixes building and business to make it feel like more like a "real life" scenario. I'm interested in orchestra (cello), horseback riding, and chemistry.
Justin Ralston
Junior/ Design Team
I've done three years of FLL and two years of FTC. I like FIRST because it inspires cooperation and teamwork, even between competing teams. I like to play the violin in orchestra.
Charlotte Chang
Junior/ Media Team
I've done one year of FTC. The FIRST community embodies competitive spirit and skill in a positive environment. Throughout students' experiences, valuable skills are acquired that can be utilized in their futures. Outside of robotics, I am a part of Key club, math academic Super Bowl, and I also volunteer at the hospital. I enjoy math and science and hope to pursue a career in some form of engineering.
Grant Harrington
Junior/ Media Team
I started FLL in fourth grade, did FTC for two years and am looking forward to FRC in these next two years to come. I like FIRST because tt encourages people to do good things for other people as well as building our engineering skills. I'm interested eating, Pokemon Trading Card Game Online, hanging out with my friends, running cross country, and eating.
Nathan Doshi
Junior/ Design Team
I've done 5 Years of FLL, 2 Years of FTC, and this is my first year of FRC. I like FIRST because I like the opportunities it provides and I enjoy working on the robots. I am interested in Civil Air Patrol, the civilian auxiliary to the United States Air Force.
Josefine Eskildsen
Junior/ Build Team
I've done one year of FLL and two years of FTC. I like FIRST because of meeting new people and getting to experience a lot of new things. Also driving is super fun. Competitions are super fun! I'm in band. I'm also interested in traveling and eating and watching action/horror movies.
Amy Portolese
Junior/ Build Team
I like FIRST because of going to competitions... and winning. I've been taking dance lessons for 13 years now (Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Pointe, Modern) If I'm not at dance I'm playing video games.
Kia Heryadi
Junior/ Build Team
I did two years of FTC. I like FIRST because I love watching the robot go from a design scribbled on paper or modeled in Inventor to a functioning machine. I like studying geopolitics, making Spotify playlists, and Wes Anderson films. I am currently interested in cosmetic formulation chemistry.
Noah Lower
Junior/ Build Team
I've done two years of FTC. I like FIRST because they have created motive innovation and just overall cool things to make. I'm interested in music.
Max Heuermann
Junior/ Media Team
I've done FLL and FTC. I like FIRST because of the different opportunities that FIRST offers to students. Outside of robotics I am interested in lacrosse and running the tech team at my student ministry.
Julia Fisher
Junior/ Media Team
I was in FTC my freshman and sophomore year. I like that FIRST creates an atmosphere of learning where anyone wants to learn, can. It's also really cool to see people with similar interests come together and do something they love as a team. I enjoy singing, playing piano, reading, and riding horses outside of robotics.
Leah Ingle
Junior/ Build Team
I've done four years with FLL and two years with FTC. I like FIRST because of how there are so many different aspects of FIRST robotics that I can be a part of. I play the cello, piano, read lots, and participate actively in the Civil Air Patrol.
Joey Irvin
Junior/ Awards Team
I was in FLL in 4th and 5th grade and participated in FTC in 9th and 10th grade. The things that I like about FIRST is what they stand for, FIRST is all about helping everyone out and spreading FIRST throughout the community. Also I love engineering and robotics. Some of the things that I am interested in outside of robotics are building generally anything, gaming on my PC that I built, and I enjoy to go paint balling a lot.
Mads Eskildsen
Junior/ Design Team
I've done FLL for 3 years and FTC for 2 years. I like FIRST because its fun and challenging. I'm involved in marching band.
Mason Haas
Junior/ Build Team
I've done three years FLL and two years of FTC. I like FIRST because I like the challenging but friendly atmosphere that FIRST creates. I'm involved in marching band, Boy Scouts, soccer
Antonio Gerardo
Junior/ Build Team
I haven't been involved with FIRST before. I'm eager to experience it this season. I enjoy working on cars, especially mine.
Josiah Parker
Mentor
I'm a STEM Academy Leader and Teacher at Penn High School. I started a FIRST team at Homestead High School (4982) and have coached for four years. I like FIRST because of the community outreach. I have endless memories of FIRST but one of my favorite is my first experience at the World Competition. It was so much bigger than what I had anticipated.
Tom Evans
Mentor
I'm a general contractor. I have had the pleasure of working with Team 135 starting with my son's team in 2006. I assist the team building the practice field and like to be involved with the manipulator or where ever I can lend a hand. There is nothing more rewarding than working with students on team projects. The FIRST project is both educational and entertaining for the students as well as myself. I also enjoy working with the other mentors. There are many great memories from working with the team but my favorite has to come from the 2006 team. That was my first year and my son was on the team. Our first event was in Ohio. The team was struggling at that event but never showed disappointment. All of the students stuck together to come up with a plan to improve for the next competition. The camera along with some programming changes took place, totally changing the dynamics of the robot. At the next event, Purdue, Team 135 was winning every match. The excitement continued growing, with every win. We all wondered how long our streak could continue. 135 ended up going undefeated in the preliminaries. In the years to follow many of the teams have competed at very high levels. The 2006 team was my first exposure to FIRST and hooked me for years to come.
Grant Carlile
Mentor
I'm a Founder, Run for Phil, Business Production Manager, and B and B Industries. I've had 13 years with FIRST. FRC Student 1 year, Penn Robotics Summer Camp co-founder, FRC mentor 10 years, FTC mentor 4 years, FLL judge 5 years, FRC judge 9 years, INFIRST Community Coordinator, FRC tournament director, and FTC tournament director. I enjoy FIRST because of the camaraderie that comes with learning together while solving problems. My favorite memory was meeting a team from Israel during my senior year on the team. We were at worlds, I was a pit rep, and they came over to us to learn about our team. Followed closely by the moment I stood next to Mr. Langfeldt as we won our first tournament ever and the excitement I felt paired with the deep joy I felt from when we were recognized with our first chairman's award.
Tom Leathers
Mentor
I'm a Program Manager, Honeywell Aerospace. I've been a FRC mentor for 11 years. I enjoy FIRST because of the design challenge. I enjoyed working with my sons (3) during their seasons.
Holly Austin
Mentor
I'm a science teacher at Penn High School. This will be my 10th season mentoring a FRC team. I started with team 45 in Kokomo for 3 years, then 2197 for 4 years, and now 135 for the 3rd year. I most enjoy seeing students gain skills, conquer fears, and reach goals they never thought possible. Favorite funny memory: The time a 45 mentor tapped a student on the opposite shoulder from where he was standing and the student about had a heart attack thinking it was the toolbox that had touched him. Favorite team memory was the time in LogoMotion when I challenged the drive team to double their scoring ability in exchange for ice cream. I didn't actually think they could do it, but I wound up buying ice cream for all 6 of them!
Lisa Whiteman
Mentor
I'm the Vice President/Human Resources at JPD Controls, Inc. I've been involved with Team 135 since 1998. We moved into the Penn district then (for the sake of our son Andrew, who was 3 at the time) and my husband, Bill, found about about Penn Robotics. He went to a meeting to check it out and see what it was all about, he got really excited, got me me interested, and the rest is history! I was the Vice President and then President of the PRPO during our son's time on the team. I've also helped with several other tasks over the years. I enjoy watching the students evolve and grow so much over time and seeing them use their FIRST experience in college and beyond to go far into some really awesome careers! That is so rewarding, gives me so much pride to be in this program! There are just soooooo many memories!!! To be honest, though, as a mom, it was watching my son help create the bots and seeing him as a driver both of his years on the team.
Allison Adams
Mentor
I'm a Mom/Photographer/FLL tournament director. I was an FLL co-coach two years. I have been an FLL judge. I have been FLL tournament co-director for last five years going on six. I helped mentor FRC last year a little. I enjoy seeing students master topics I never had an inkling of when I was a student! My first memory of FIRST was finding out Lego League was not actually just building large structures out if legos at a team call out🤣
David Adam
Mentor
I'm a Project Engineer. This is my second year with Team 135. I do consider myself a newbie just not a rookie. I enjoy FIRST by helping Team 135 in anyway I can is very satisfying. I have to tell you that running down to the competition viewing area at St Louis is awe inspiring. Watching our team 135 compete is exciting. But knowing all the little details necessary to make this team run is the best.
Andy Edelbrock
Mentor
I'm a Ascensia Diabetes Care R and D Staff Engineer. I've mentored FLL – six years, FTC - one year, and FRC - six years. I enjoy working with the students helping to flush out your ideas. FLL – I was judging an FLL competition for design and one of the elementary teams indicated they had a rear differential but no one was able to describe what it was, what it did or how they built it. The look of horror on the coach’s face was worth it. Needless to say the team did not fair well on the design scoring. FRC – It was the 2014 year my son AJ’s second year with Team 135 FRC. They had built a catapult for the ball and it packed quite a punch. We went to a scrimmage and one team wanted to see if they could block our shot and wanted us to fire into their robot. It hit hard and almost knocked their robot over. It shook it up pretty good and they never asked to try again nor did they try to block us during competition.
Nancy Heisler
Mentor
I'm an Advanced Quality Engineer. I've only mentored been Penn Robotics. 2016-2017 school year both my girls were on the team. A little bit the previous year, going to Indiana events for my daughter, Lizzie, her junior year. I enjoy FIRST because of the thrill of seeing how excited the kids get. Anyone can be anything they want to be and Robotics helps teach kids that. My favorite memory of FIRST is all of it! I love the atmosphere and how happy the kids seem to be. It is really an excellent experience.
Ernie McDonald
Mentor
I'm an Engineering Director / Plant Startup Program Manager. I've been a FLL coach. I enjoy FIRST because of the technical sportsmanship, teamwork and cooperation. The first competition that I attended was more exciting that I ever expected. I’m impressed with the level of competition and the technical expertise of the team members.
Bruce Kelsey
Mentor
I'm a Product Engineer. I enjoy FIRST because of the competitions. My favorite memory is helping the students achieve the task of making the competition robot.
Kim Kelsey
Mentor
I'm taking time off from a career in non-profit development coaching to mentor Team 135 and return to school. I did one year as a FIRST volunteer. I enjoy FIRST because of the positive focus on professionalism and they student first mentality. My favorite memory is seeing my first competition at Penn High School and watching my daughter find her passion in engineering.
Lisa McDonald
Mentor
I'm a Business Owner. I've sponsored and coached a FLL team. I enjoy FIRST because of the excitement of watching kids grow! My favorite memory was watching my oldest son come become more confident and mature.