The mission of the Iron Tigers is to learn and apply the skills of robotics in First Robotics Competitions, but also to pass on the skills that we have acquired to the young aspiring minds of our community in Easton, Massachusetts. We are in our build room working tirelessly because robotics gives us the hunger to strive higher and travel into uncharted territories but in the midst of this stress, the team still embodies the core values of gracious professionalism, collaboration, and perseverance. We do this because it creates a healthy team atmosphere but also in order to be role models to the children who watch our competitions, as well as those who see our presentations.

Here is a first hand review from one of our new team members and what he thought on the his first year with the team!

As the end of our robotics season wanes there are numerous things that I as a 9th grader can take away from the season. Let me start by saying that the Robotics team is like a family to me now because I have been with these teammates every day for the past few months and together we continuously learn new gratifying skills both on the robot and working together. I had the privilege of working along the robotics captains Thomas Canty, Jack Duffy-Protentis, Nick Manos, Jessica Marquez and Jessica Cobb.

I was primarily a programmer and I learnt so much in a matter of weeks as did my programming peers. Nick Manos clearly taught us how to program in Java in a very patient way that most kids our age wouldn't be able to do. It was great to see the collaboration of all the three branches of our team (build, programming, and electrical) come together. We worked very hard for the six weeks that we were allowed to build. Some nights we would stay up until 10 or 11 and perfect the robot to the best of our ability. However we had to start somewhere and without our mentors, Joe Markee, Jay Coutu, and Omar Ghani (in no particular order) none of this would have been possible. Our mentors and captains not only taught us about the robot itself, they taught us the value of gracious professionalism, collaboration, and perseverance.

I remember on the first day of programming I was struggling to write code and I kept feeling discouraged however the programming captain persisted on motivating me and others to write code so that we can learn and grow. He saw discouragement I was feeling and he took that and completely turned it around and for that I am extremely grateful because programming is a skill I can use for the rest of my life. At our first competition our robot wasn't performing up to par and the team tried to fix it.

We tirelessly tested and located the problem on our robot and after that it started functioning, however looking back the bigger moral of the story was that we need to solve problems even when things aren't going our way and that’s exactly what the 4176 Iron Tigers did. The next competition our robot was performing very highly and we had even won an award for working with perseverance even when our robot did not correctly work or under limited working conditions. I am very grateful to be apart of this team because it has taught me the skills of robotics, leadership, perseverance, but above all, the team effort.