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Best Robotics Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Federated Giving Programs, Philanthropy, Youth Development

Mission: Advance education of the public in engineering, mathematics & related scientific disciplines thru promoting & overseeing competitive activities between teams from secondary schools and other interested groups.

Programs: Advance education of the public in engineering, mathematics & related scientific disciplines thru promoting & overseeing competitive activities between teams from secondary schools and other interested groups.

Community Stories

89 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Advisor

Rating: 5

I have been involved with the BEST program now for 3 years as a teacher/coach. Prior to this I had never even heard of Robotics. I can honestly say robotics, BEST Robotics, makes a difference in children's lives. I've seen young people, not knowing what they want to do in their lives, become interested and pursue degrees and careers in engineering after participating in Robotics. Robotics reaches a wide range of students with a wide range of talents. It is an outstanding opportunity to students to elarn more about the business and engineering world. It develops ther critical thinking skills, creativity and confidence! The best thing about BEST? It is a free organization for our students!

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

A colleague and I started the first BEST "hub" (competition site) in Alabama in 2001 and since then have had a hand in helping 20-plus other hubs get started around the country. There are now 47 sites in 16 states, with 8 here in Alabama. BEST is now entering its 19th year as a volunteer-run organization. It continues to have a profound impact on K-12 Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education and the lives of thousands of students who participate in it. My experience in BEST has been the highlight of my 33 years in higher education and I count it a privilege to get to be a part of it.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with the BEST program for 10 years now as a student, a volunteer, and a mentor.

From all aspects, BEST has helped me immensely in my engineering career. The hands-on experience that I received in high-school as well as the interaction with mentors and teachers gave me a jump start on my college education. It has also given me valuable experience with some of the "soft skills" that engineers typically lack. I was ahead of my peers in skills such as presentation, communication (written and oral), and working on a team of engineers on a deadline with tight restrictions (budget and time).

As a mentor, I got a chance to see the competition from another angle. It was an experience to mentor participants and see their engineering and problem-solving skills take off in just 6 short weeks. I still see some of the students that I mentored on campus in engineering, and it is exciting to know that I may have had some small part in inspiring them to pursue engineering.

As a volunteer, I continue to give back to the BEST program, as I feel that more high school students should get the benefits that I received from the competition. As a volunteer, I am focused on providing the most consistent and exciting competition experience that I possible can for the students.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have volunteered as a judge of presentations and competition awards for elegance and robustness. It has been a pleasure working with the Best organizers and seeing the excitement from the students as they perform. I have volunteered for other non-profit organizations and BEST is by far the most well run and organized program.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved in BEST for several years, and I love it. It is the answer to sports dominated academics. Kids are able to have the thrill of competition, and at the same time, use their gifts of building, designing, writing, painting, calculating, teaming, problem solving, etc. It has an amazing impact on the kids who are involved. As a math teacher/sports coach, I see the kids develop an appreciation of math. Math is no longer a necessary evil, but a pathway to a future.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Last fall we ran our first local competition. Once word got out about what we were doing, we were overwhelmed with schools who wanted to participate. We had to limit the number the first year. This year we will easily double in size and still have to limit the number of teams we can take. BEST is fantastic!

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 4

OKBest has been a great tool for kids. My students finally feel they have a place where knowledge is power. Robotics are now COOL. I'm thankful for this organization and wish it would have been around when I was in school.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first became involved with BEST in 2003 after being asked to help judge by a local professor and good friend. After the first hub event (then Alabama BEST) I was hooked. I was so thoroughly impressed by the program and by the enthusiasm of these remarkable students that I haven't missed the opportunity to judge at any our hub or regional events since! It was also my great pleasure to be part of the judging staff at the National Championship in 2010.

I know of no other program that offers students the opportunity to take part in such a "real world" engineering effort. BEST allows students of a wide range of skills and future career paths to come together in a team effort to design, build, promote, and support an engineered product. And what they accomplish along the way can only serve to grow them into truly successful people, no matter where their studies lead them.

As long as I'm able to support this wonderful process, how could I possibly not be involved?

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

My name is John Stewart and I was a sponsor of a robotics team at Seagoville High School. It is great to be able to allow students to be involved in an electronics competition that can be very expensive but of no cost to the students. The students through the years have continued to use their experience in scholarship and work applications.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered to be a judge in the 2010 New Mexico State University/BEST state competition. My educational background is electrical/computer engineering and I came to the competition with a bias for judging the exciting, "sexy," robot performance phase of the competition; however, what I discovered was, perhaps, more important than evaluating robot performance. At the competition I discovered the diversity of skills that could be utilized on a team.

BEST emphasizes much, much more than simply the math/engineering technical phases of project development, such as, community support, fund raising, team building, and record-keeping. The BEST competition provided an opportunity for students to recognize not only the importance of the technical contributions from students interested in building robots, but also, the significance of contributions from students with interests in business, photography and graphic design, project management, and communications.

One of our more successful teams included students who, of course, were programmers and physics students focused on robot performance, but the team had humanities/arts students working on photos and videos to document the robot development while business students organized presentations to the city council for support from their community during fund raisers. The BEST competition truly did help bring together a small but diverse community in support of their high school students as they built their robot.

I thoroughly enjoyed evaluating the teams and working within the BEST organization.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

I am a parent/mentor for the Merrol Hyde Robotics Team, which is in it's third year of participation. This program has opened a new world to our school and students who otherwise would not have the opportunity to experience careers in the engineering field.

BEST’s (Boosting Engineering Science and Technology) mission is to inspire students to pursue careers in engineering, science, technology, and math through participation in a sports-like science and engineering-based robotics competition. United States undergraduate institutions award 16 percent of their degrees in sciences or engineering; South Korea and China award 38 percent and 47 percent, respectively. America ranks 27th among developed nations in the proportion of students receiving undergraduate degrees in science or engineering. This program aims to change America's ranking. The competition simulates a real world engineering and manufacturing company. The game objective is to produce a product, the robot, which is capable of performing a driver operated assigned task. The team must design, engineer, build, and program the robot. The robot has a specification of 2’ x 2' x 2' and weigh 24 lbs. Each team receives an identical set of parts, from their local hub, to produce the robot of their design. You cannot use any other parts. This keeps everyone on a level playing field. All robots go through a compliance check. The team also designs and builds a display booth which has a specification of 10’ x 10'x 10' for a product exhibit. An oral marketing presentation is given in front of a panel of judges who represent the company interested in purchasing the robot. A technical notebook is published describing the engineering process of developing the robot. This enormous undertaking is achieved in a short 6 weeks by 6th through 12th grade team members. Could your company do this? These students are very dedicated - giving up many after school hours, weekends, and even their Fall Break to accomplish this program. This team also designs and produces a team t-shirt, which represents the company uniform; maintains a webpage representing their team; have journalists and photographers; maintains a budget which must be presented to the judges. So as you can see, this is a fully functional engineering and manufacturing company. All of this prepares the students for an education in engineering and gives them the opportunity to explore a career that is in great demand in the United States.

Our school does not expose students to engineering courses and because of funding issues most schools do not offer Career Technical Education opportunities. This program fills that gap. This is a fully funded program so that teams can compete without expense, although top teams do spend varying amounts. The opportunity to fundraise gives students the additional experience of operating a real company that must raise capital.

Our team has had ten seniors graduate, seven have pursued engineering degrees, one political science, and two journalism.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was involved with the BEST competition for the first time this year. I volunteered to help as a judge. As someone who also works in a technical field, I was very encouraged to see so many young people get excited about technology. The BEST organiziation is a great way for students of all interests and ages to get involved. There is a role for each student to perfom regardless of technical ability.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The BEST competition helped me kick off a new program starting at our school. We had never had a robotics group and jumped into this competition to try and get one started. The support we got along every step of the way was enormous. The kick-off day had people who were dedicated to helping us understand what the end goals were and even included a "get started" workshop for us to begin the steps to building our robot. We had volunteer mentors who came to our school and helped my team work through the problem-solving and building that went in to getting ready for competition. We also utilized the ability to post questions and get advice from other teams, and even had a team allow us to go over and practice on their "field" and offer advice. We look forward to going back next year.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked the registration and information desk the past to years at the Tennessee Valley Best Robotics at Calhoun Community College. My experience with this event has been a very positive one. Both years I was able to help for my time slot and someone was there when my shift was finished. Also I had the opportunity to watch the event as a spectator while I was not working and the event seems to be a very educational experience for everyone involved!

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 4

Students got a hands on expierence by buidling and planning a desgin for the challenge that was given.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

I am a robotics coach for a high school robotics team. We enter the BEST Robotics Competition each year. It is a fantastic experience for our high school students. Through this program, each team member learns and utilizes a variety of academic skills to achieve a team goal. Team members learn math, science, engineering, business, technology, and communications skills that will help them succeed in today's competitive business environment. BEST is fantastic program in which all students can be involved and become assets to the team.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

My name is Dave Mixer. I have been part of Capitol BEST for Leander High School since they started within the Austix, Texas area back in 2000. For me, it is educational for the students to learn how to build the 'bot' for the contest and fun to see them compete.

Review from Guidestar

Greg Y.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved in BEST since 1995. Someone showed me some very raw video of a BEST contest in action one day at work. It caught my attention and I instantly signed on as a volunteer. I've never looked back. I am blessed to have been a part of the "BEST family" for so long. It inspires me. The students inspire me and the volunteers inspire me. It's incredible to think about how many students lives have been changed by this program over the last 18 years. It's fun, exciting, challenging, and educational all in one. There is no other program that I know of that provides students with such a diverse learning experience that prepares them for, not only STEM careers, but any career they choose. Our focus is on engineering, science, technology and mathematics and as an engineer myself I believe strongly in the mission. And I continue to spend countless hours doing it because of a personal satisfaction like none other. Like when a student approaches me after the contest and says "Thank you for giving me this opportunity"....that's all it takes.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with BEST for two years now. It presents a GREAT opportunity for middle and high school age children to learn - hands on - about science , technology and engineering.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I began working with this group as a parent, but I found that I enjoyed working with this group of people. They are hard working and dedicated to helping our young people learn about life and the hard work it entails. My daughter is about to graduate college with a degree in EE and I owe all of that to BEST. She is a dedicated member of the board and even though it has been 5 years since she competed, I have been asked every year to help judge the presentations.

I enjoy that part so much that I clear my schedule when the call comes.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been a judge for the Best robotics competition in North Texas, sponsored by the University of North Texas. I have never seen anything like it before, it is far beyond high school science fairs. The students are creative, enthusiastic, and truly involved. I observed students testing, repairing, and retesting malfunctioning robots, moments before competition, all without adult help or even hints. The students knew their creations inside and out and were proud of their products. I also looked over their project logs containing preliminary designs, prototypes, and various refinements.

This is the best student program I've ever seen for getting high school students interested in technical and engineering careers.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 4

BEST Robotics is a grass-roots organization run by local Hubs.
Each Hub finds their own sources of funding (usually from local corporate sponsors).
Each Hub provides a Robotics competition kit to 8-30 schools, and holds a local competition. Winners go on to Regional competitions.
Unlike some other Robotics competitions, this program is "free to schools":
- there is no fee to participate, no registration, no kit purchase req.
- consumables are provided
- return kit of electronics is loaned out
But school groups often need their own budget for tools and transportation to competition events.

A large part of the BEST Robotics experience is following the Engineering Design Process, and documenting that process in an Engineering notebook.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a referee for West Texas Best for several years and have also helped to construct the playing field for the robotics contest for the past few years.

Best is a great chance for students in Jr Hi and High School to learn about technology, Electrical Entineering, Mechanical Engineering, Computer Science, and compete in a nation wide contest to show their achievement.
Bobby

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

I've taught 8 years and my students have participated for 7 years. BEST Robotics helps light the fire under my students to achieve their fullest potential. It opens their eyes to the numerous possibilities that await them after middle school and high school. For some, it helps to solidify the choices they will soon make for their adult lives. The problem solving processes and interpersonal skills learned here serve the students for the rest of their lives regardless of what kind of field they eventually choose.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

BEST Robotics plays such a vital role in our North Alabama community and the state of Alabama. Involvement from the K-12 schools as well as the business partners that help sponsor the events and provide volunteers is growing exponentially. This event directly impacts the economic growth in this area due to the abundance of high tech companies that depend upon pipeline of potential employees in STEM related professions. Calhoun Community College is proud to host the Tennessee Valley BEST hub and to support the state and national level competitions as well. BEST is the Best!

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

I am an advisor in Houston County. BEST has been a GREAT experience for both the teachers and the students! We hope to continue with this great program!

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 3

I am a middle school teacher and this was my first year. I found this to be a great activity for students to learn about engineering and problem solving. I think my students would have gotten more out of the experience if we would have had better support from industry.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

BEST Robotics has been in my life since freshman year of high school. I competed every year, and by my senior year I knew I wanted to be an engineer. I started college as an engineering students in 2006 and now I am graduating this year with a BS in Electrical Engineering.

I volunteered every year at Denton County BEST and Texas BEST, and it was great to see students get excited about engineering. This program was the BEST thing that could have happened in my life, and I will support it anytime, anywhere.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have coached in the BEST robotics competition for the past 3 years. I have also been involved in coaching in several other competitions with which I can compare the BEST competition. BEST is, by far, the most beneficial competition to the student. Students are involved in an engineering competition that so closely mimics "real world" engineering that they learn invaluable field lessons. Students get the chance to attach an engineering design problem, set a schedule with milestones and then complete the actual design and test it. Although I have taken my students to several competitions over the years, the one I keep coming back to is BEST!

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As an engineer and ballplayer I've done a lot of coaching. I probably spend $20/wk on this program and ya know what, it's worth it! When I ran into this program my oldest daughter was a soph. The next year they needed someone to keep the program going so I picked up the ball. After 2 daughters and a son (about 8 yrs) I thought about passing the ball, but they still needed someone (w/ a garage & tools) so I decided that even though my youngest has down's there isn't really a good reason she can't pitch in. This is her 2nd year and she is just starting to get into it, which is normal for what I see since the freshman are generally intimidated by the Sr's. The program takes some investment (broken drill bits & plenty of mountain dew) but the satisfaction comes in several ways.
Someone realizes that they can do something with a tool (ryobi, dremel whatever) that they never used before.
Someone picks up a concept and runs w/ it, (4 bar linkage, slider, whatever).
The best day is the day of the competition. The group realizes that the robot actually works! And if we're in the competition to go to the next level (about 4 times in 10 yrs) then the excitement of the group is unbelievable.
The secret is to teach them to build, not build it, then use the KISS method (keep it simple sir).

As a mentor the excitement is that every year I see a new group of students, and the challenge is to work with the tools you have (and I mean the students).

BTW, I grew up using tools and it amazes me how many students don't even know how to use a belt sander.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been coaching Best robotics foe many years now. This is an excellent program to get the students thinking about engineering related fields. I know this program has changed the life skill set for many students.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved as a coach in many other school competitions. I find that Best Robotics to be the most efficient school level competition because it allows to students to focus on the technical and management of the competition without having to worry about extraneous aspects such as fund raising or trying to find materials like other competitions. It all boils down to time and technical effort of the students. It last six weeks which is ideal for high school students who normally are very busy with countless other activities throughout the school year. By limiting the hardware to those that are supplied, the playing field is equalized. I intend to continue supporting Best Robotics for many years to come.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Outstanding experience and opportunity to work with kids to show them that math and science are a big part of life and can be fun.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 4

The BEST competition was a great experience. I had the opportunity to work with middle school to high school age students who work as a team in a really tough competition with many different requirments that develop different creative and intellectual skils.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have participated in BEST for the last 9 years - first as a ref then building the robot that is used to demonstrate the current years game. I have always been amazed at how far the students knowledge of engineering grows from kickoff day untill the actual competition (6 weeks).

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 4

This is my first year of working with BEST Robotics and I am very impressed with their organization. They are very interested in improving the engineering and design understanding of the students that participate in their competitions. I am looking forward to many more years working with the group.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I participated in BEST Robotics as a high school student. I had no idea what engineering was. I remember going to the Texas Instruments and Raytheon Saturday Help Sessions where senior engineers helped us with our robots. We didn't know what servo motors were, and the volunteers patiently explained and helped us through the process.
I remember going to the first year of the competition at the University of Dallas. Our team was amazed that the robot competition was cheered on like a college basketball game with bands, cheerleading squads, and school mascots. This experience was invigorating. In our third year of the competition, my team made it to semi-finals.

I strongly believe that my experience with BEST Robotics was the reason I decided to pursue engineering. I went on to major in Aerospace Engineering at MIT.

After graduating, I returned to Dallas, Texas to work as an Aerospace Systems Engineer at Raytheon. I regularly volunteer with BEST as a team mentor, judge, and referee.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

I have worked with BEST locally first as a faculty volunteer, then as a team mentor, and now as an assistant director for a local competition. It is amazing what middle and high school teams can do in a six weeks with very limited resources. It has stimulated interest in the engineering and mathematical sciences and encouraged participants to consider pursuing similar degrees at the next level of their education. It is a great organization.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 4

I teach a Jr. High robotics program and I have been a part of this contest for the last 5 years. I believe it is very benificial for my students to be a part of the competition because it helps build THinking Skills.
They must work together in groups to solve problems and accomplish the desired goal. During the competition itself, they must work under extreme pressure, solve problems within the time allowed. It's GREAT !

Review from Guidestar

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have worked with BEST as a Teacher sponsor for 5 years before retiring and working as a board member and assistant director for out local hub. It amazes me each year how much creativity and effort the young people of today can put into such a short time. The contest realy gets them excited about science and engineering but it also alsows students who are not so inclined to participate on the team in its many facets. And since it doesn't cost theteams anyhting it allows every school and student to participate even if they have no funds available.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

Imagine yourself at a School Pep Rally. Most of the time, the jocks, theatre students, cheerleaders, dancers and Student Council members take the spotlight. But after the BEST Robotics Competition, my winning tech students had something to show off...not just their trophy and medals, but also a live demonstration of their robot's performance. With the help of our Volunteer mentor, Chris, we set up a section of the game field and showed our student body what we did to earn third place! What an ego boost for my tech students who had never been 'on-stage' and looking 'cool' in front of the middle school student body.

Review from Guidestar

Jacob B.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I encountered BEST through a volunteer opportunity in College and then again when I started my career as an engineer. I think it is extremely beneficial for high school kids to learn to build robots. Not only is it good for encouraging more kids to go into STEM professions, but it teaches them a lot of valuable life skills and general handiness with tools.

BEST excels in teaching kids to think about complex problems with creative "out of the box" solutions. Because you literally get a box of parts you are allowed to use, and you cannot use anything else. It is pretty amazing to see what these kids can do.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 4

Great program for high school students of all backgrounds. Besides robotics activities, marketing and promotional requirements involve other disciplines and interests.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 4

This is a great program that started as a grass roots effort, building every year to what it is today - a national, inclusive, collaborative, inexpensive (to the teams), hands-on learning, and fun competition that allow students from all walks of life and all communities to learn the essentials of the engineering process, the pitfalls of actually building a fairly complicated system, and seeing which teams can do the best. It involves local industry professionals as mentors. It gets parents and retirees involved in working with the teams. Most of all in engages the students and gives them serious reasons to consider a career in engineering.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

BEST Robotics, provides middle & high school students with incredible oppurtunites for developing interest & passion in science & engineering. The expereince I had as a Volunteer at BEST competition was truly amazing. It was great to see school kids working with their mentors to come up with really neat and innovative ideas. The BEST expereince, undoubtedly has a great potential to nurture the talent of these young kids.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I was greatly impressed by the aptitude of the middle school and high school students! BEST robotics is a great way for students to be challenged and bring forth their potential. The event it very well organized, and I enjoyed being a judge.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Being a mentor of a team participated BEST for the first time, it was a challenge. The school had no proper machine shop facilities, and the students had no experience in engineering design and machining. Even though it was very tough for the mentors to provide guidance while attempting to meet the deadlines with simpler tools, both the mentor and the team learned significantly by such a real-life engineering opportunity. Best of all, the team ranked high in the regional competition with their first ever constructed robot! They attracted sponsors and donation to build a more dedicated machine shop. The students and the school benefited significantly from such a competition, where they can show their talent.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

BEST Robotics provides fantastic opportunities for middle and high school students to practice teamwork, sportsmanship / ethical competition and real-world problem solving. I became involved as a team mentor in the Tennessee Valley hub when my son joined a team. He included his team-related experience on his resume, which gave him positive talking points and helped him to obtain his first co-op job while in college. After he graduated high school, I also "graduated" and began volunteering with the hub organization. BEST is the only program I know about that affords opportunities for both technical and non-technical students to work towards common goals (with some different areas of focus, naturally). Even though there is still the "agony of defeat" for teams that don't win something, all the students I have spoken with have been upbeat / enthusiastic and displayed great team spirit. I am very high on BEST Robotics and the opportunities the program brings to students, and strongly encourage schools and teacher-sponsors to take the plunge if at all possible. It is a labor of love for me, and I intend to continue supporting the organization as long as I am able.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I served as a mentor to one of the BEST Robotics teams. In fact, it was a new team from a school who was participating for the first time. I found BEST to be an absolutely remarkable program for students and teachers. The robotics challenge was difficult, yet there was so much support from the organization. My kids got to work on innovation, creativity, team work, and management skills (among other things). The robotics kit was very thorough and there were a lot of pieces one could use if he/she had the imagination. Definitely an A+ student-robotics organization. Also, I've volunteered with FIRST LEGO before. BEST is on par with FIRST.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

This has been one of the most influencial programs for our students! We had 25% of our school population participate in the program! Students learned things from all aspects of the cirriculum and alot of real-world experience was included! On top of that, it was FUN!!! I have to say alot of hours went in to it as well. I think because of this, our students took even more pride in their work. I am extremely proud of our team!!!! Regionals in our first year!!!! GO PRIDE TECHNOLOGY!!!!!!

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

This was our second year in the Best Robotics competition. The students put in many hours of work to build the robot, and thoroughly enjoyed every minute. I feel they learned several key concepts in physics, and they also learned some interesting facts about about working as a team. I hope the program can continue and involve more students than we had this year. The Capitol-Best Robotics rocks.

L Ellis

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

For the past 3 years I have entered 7th and 8th grade in the robotics competition. The engineering skills used during the process of creating the robotic have encouraged many participants to pursue an engineering career. The engineering process also strengthens higher order thinking skills as well as being highly enjoyable for the students. I would encourage any teacher who has considered entering the contest to do so.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered last year with Dallas BEST. I have to say it was one of the best volunteering experiences I have had on my life. The kids were great and it was so wonderful to be in a room full of kids that were really ENGAGED with learning. Their creativity was just wonderful and I plan to be a part of this for a very long time.

The Robotics competitions were so much fun and you could see the gears turn not only on the robots but in the kids heads as they saw what other teams had developed for their robots. They learned so much about what worked well and what didn't and did so in a way that made them want to improve their robots rather than toss their hands up and give up. It made ME want to build a robot and I am NOT an engineer.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with BEST Robotics since ts third year. This is one of the best programs for getting kids interested in science and technology. Many of the students, especially girls, would never have thought of entering this field until they particiated in BEST. It makes kids see that engineering can be fun and there are many different kinds of technology. Kids that never even planned on going to college pursued degrees in engineering, science and technology because of BEST. It is a great program, with dedicated volunteers, who believ in the program.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Had a great time working with the BEST group. The kids were totally focused on the event. I look forward to the next event.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 4

This was the first year our school participated in BEST, and it was by far, one of the hi-lights of our year. Our students loved the experience even with all the long hours we spent working prior to the competition. I have parents and students who tell me they cannot wait until BEST next year. What sets BEST apart from other competitions is that EVERY child can participate; there is a job for everyone. It was also wonderful to see parents and members of the community helping our students. The skills learned during those six weeks are skills that only programs like BEST can offer!

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 5

I have worked with BEST Robotics for ten years in the Austin area. I would not have this kind of commitment unless I truly thought that the program helped students. Many students in the program have gone on to get degrees in the engineering, math, and science.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Best Robotics is an incredible program for getting children excited about engineering and business. My wife and I home-school my son and daughter, and we mentored the first team from my children's cooperative school last year. We decided to not only build the robot, but compete for the Best Award because it offered exposure to many aspects of engineering, marketing, finance, construction, human relations, organizational structure, technical writing and presentations. This competition required the most intense commitment from the children and mentors of any other program we have ever been involved in, but everyone learned so much.

My son learned computer aided design (CAD) during this competition and developed a full CAD model of the robot that the team designed. He also was heavily involved in fabrication of the robot, documenting the engineering process in the engineering notebook and performing the marketing presentation. He is very excited about going to college and pursuing an engineering degree, and has discovered several new aspects of engineering that he is interested in.

My daughter was involved in the early phases of engineering design, fabrication of the robot, writing the engineering notebook and giving the marketing presentation. At first she was apprehensive about giving the presentation, but when she got into it, she found out that she really enjoyed speaking to the judges. This was an incredible growing experience for her too. She decided that engineering wasn't her field, but she enjoyed the whole event and learned a lot about herself.

I highly recommend this program because it provides one of the best motivational and learning experiences for any child interested in a professional career.

Review from Guidestar

twall

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The BEST Robotics competition is very dear to the heart of our family. My son's involvement was the anchor that kept him in school. He was a child that struggled academically and often felt as though school just wasn't for him. After he became involved in the program he found a reason for giving school a second chance...just so he could compete in BEST. His involvement showed him that there is a place for all levels of skill and intelligences in the world of business. He went on to successfully complete high school and college (against many odds) and is now a technician for one of the world's most reknown manufacturers. I volunteer as a judge and mentor in the competition (even though my son is grown and living on his own) because it is my way to give back to the organization that gave so much to my family.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I participated in BEST robotics for 6 years as a student. I attribute the bulk of my growth in knowledge of engineering before college to the BEST program. The program gave me confidence in public speaking as well, and has allowed me to become an engineer who breaks the stereotype and can communicate well with others. BEST truly changed my life- which is why I now volunteer to support my hub.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

BEST Robotics has truly been a gift from God for so many students. I have been working with the program for about 3yrs. TThe program affords students to enhance their knowlegde in Science, Engineering, Technology, Math and even their writing and communication skills will having fun. This year with a Workforce grant in Alabama, we have afforded students in 23 of the poorest and highest unemployment rates counties in the State an opportunity to participate in BEST. The participation and enthusiasm is overwhelming. BEST is truly the BEST!

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My son Gabe was involved with BEST robotics at LASA Highschool on the robotics team for 3 years in Austin, Tx. I can say as a result of this experience he is a incredible success in his sophomore year at Georgia Tech studying Mechanical Engineering. Further he applied for co-ops after his freshman year at GaTech and received 6 offers and is now co-oping for Mercedes Benz in Alabama as well. BEST robotics gave my son leadership, team work, high level problem solving and the confidence to succeed. I also was a board member of the robotics team at LASA and witnessed the incredible mentoring and shadowing that occurs amongst teachers, team members and parents. And as a professional counselor specializing in learning differences for 20 years I can tell you that programs such as BEST give students, families and communities the skills to engage and find real success that transfers directly into the real world of college and careers. Thanks for being a part of my son's success.
James Ochoa, LPC

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 4

My daughter competed in BEST for three years in high school and I saw the advantages of the engineering process that BEST provides. She was responsible for putting together a notebook that chronicled the build process, the engineering design process and the sucesses and failures of the team efforts. She is now a second year engineering student and I don't think she would have chosen engineering without her experience in BEST. I now volunteer with our local events because of the value it provides our students.

Review from Guidestar

Board Member

Rating: 5

As an Electrical Engineer, BEST is a great conduit to encourage students to consider engineering as a life long hobby. BEST provides the resources and people to help promote an interest in Technology. Also, as a board member involved in the Return Kit support, Judging, and Game Scoring, the feedback from the teachers, parents, and especially the students was overwhelming.

Review from Guidestar