Hello, and welcome to our team Sir Lancer Bots 2977 page! Every great team starts out small and has to start somewhere. Our fun outgoing team was established in the ripe year of 2007 and all began when, Paul, who is now a good friend of the team, had recruited a new teacher, Mr. Mark Moulton. Paul had shared with Mr. Moulton that there was a competition taking place in Minneapolis. He had asked the new recruit if he would be interested in checking it out. Mark was immediately hooked! Later on in our timeline, Mr. Moulton had showed one of his classes a competition video which had gained the attention of 11 students. The school had provided them with absolutely zero money, and they had to gather all they needed themselves. They had presented to a local business, and luckily, one of the students had a parent working for Ace Communication (a.k.a Acentek). This company then became our founding sponsor after a generous donation of $7,500 to start us up!
In our first season, we had faced many challenges. Some of which included space, funding, technology and equipment, and school acceptance. We had struggled with acceptance from the school up until 2013, a good 6 years later. Some of our greatest awards were watching the students enjoy themselves and have a fun time, while also watching them have so much excitement for the next season. We have also taken part in different outreaches. Some of our firsts included a ton of presentations to local businesses while also receiving some news coverage, presenting to the school board, and getting a robot featured in one of our schools plays (Seussical the Musical)! We were also lucky enough to receive some local tours (visit to Kwik Trip Bakery and Gundersen Robotic Surgery). We had finally started consecutive seasons, and our team had grown from 11 to 20 kids! Our practice for our pits had won us the “Friendliest Pit Award”, and we had our first member who had been apart of the team for 4 years! We were “the little team that could”.
After taking part in many different presentations, 3 other teams were now started! We worked with LIH to form teams at Central, Aquinas, and Luther. A sponsorship of $10,000 per team was provided, and the teams were invited to our build sessions once a week, which evolved into the December Training Event! In 2013, a Coalition was formalized and more teams were added. We had started the process to become a 501(c)3 non-profit! December Training Event/Scrimmage Event had become known as “Week 0”. During the Seven Rivers Regional in April of 2017, Steve Bissen had worked with LIH, which had helped us gain $125,000 in sponsorships! 50 teams had attended the regional, and it featured over 100 volunteers.
Our team has had approximately 25 mentors over the course of 10 years. Our mentors consist of individuals from all over. Some local teams around us include La Crescent, Westby, Luther, Caledonia, Aquinas, Houston, Central HS (La Crosse), Arcadia, Onalaska, West Salem, and Holmen! We can’t wait to see how the FIRST Robotics teams will continue to grow, as well as our own, and to see where the coming years take us.