Battlefield FRC Mentor Wins Woodie Flowers Volunteer Award
Posted on 06/18/2016
FRC Image

After intense competition in seven district tournaments, the top fifty-eight First Robotics Competition teams from Virginia, Maryland and DC arrived to compete in the Chesapeake District Championship held at the University of Maryland Xfinity Center. Claiming the Chairman's Award, Battlefield High School Robotics team ILITE 1885, earned an invitation to compete at the FIRST Championship in St. Louis. ILITE Team 1885 mentor, Mr. Jesse Knight, Senior Consultant with Macedon Technologies, was also honored at the District Championship with the Woodie Flowers Finalist Award. Mr. Knight will attend the FIRST Championship in St. Louis as a team mentor and finalist for the Woodie Flowers Award competing with all other adult mentors selected from other qualifying events since the inception of FIRST.

Each year high school students on First Robotics Competition teams choose one adult mentor as their Woodie Flowers Finalist Award Candidate. The students submit an essay describing how their selected mentor has given them the best understanding of the art and science of engineering design. An eleven year ILITE Team 1885 mentor Mr. Knight was Team 1885's nominee and the winner among all nominated mentors at the Chesapeake District Championship.

As a finalist for the Woodie Flowers Award, Mr. Knight joins an elite group of adult mentors who are recognized for their outstanding contributions to motivating and challenging FRC students. Mr. Knight graduated from Houston County High School in Warner Robins, GA, attending the Georgia Institute of Technology on Hope and other scholarships where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering. After starting his career in Atlanta, Mr. Knight moved to Virginia to work for Lockheed Martin and recently transitioned to Macedon Technologies as a Senior Consultant. Mr. Knight also earned a Master of Science in Systems Engineering from George Mason University.

"The engineering, leadership and teamwork that kids learn through FIRST robotics are critical to career success in the marketplace," said ILITE Team 1885 Coach Gail Drake, who is also a prior Woodie Flowers Finalist Award winner for ILITE FRC Team 1885. "We are fortunate to have mentors like Jesse who freely give of their time and talents to support the team giving our students the opportunity to learn engineering, programming and business skills in a hands-on learning environment," said Coach Drake.

Established in 2005 with thirty-two students, ILITE FRC Team 1885 is today one of the largest robotics programs in the Mid-Atlantic region. ILITE FRC Team 1885 based at Battlefield High School in Prince William County, Virginia is coached by Professor Gail Drake. ILITE stands for Inspiring Leaders in Technology and Engineering. Since winning Rookie All Star in 2006 at the FIRST Championship, ILITE FRC Team 1885 has won numerous awards including five regional Chairman's Awards and four regional Engineering Inspiration Awards. ILITE Team 1885 engages in extensive outreach to share their love of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) by holding STEM summer camps, hosting an annual STEM Expo, advocating for STEM education with national politicians and supporting robotics education at local elementary schools as well as schools in Haiti and Malaysia. Read more about ILITE FRC Team 1885, visit the ILITE website.

This article was originally published by "Patch." Read the Patch news article.