L to R: Fernando Escalante, James Kelly and Everett Gallella from the Rickrollers, team 4344, concentrate on controlling their robot during a match.
L to R: Fernando Escalante, James Kelly and Everett Gallella from the Rickrollers, team 4344, concentrate on controlling their robot during a match. Image Credit: Courtesy PHI Robotics / Mike McMillan
Come join VOCS Robotics Club during our Season Kick-Off during September @ VOCS Annex. As part of the Robotics Club, you will meet new friends, learn new skills, and participate in Regional Competitions! Each year the Club puts their heads and their hands together to meet an exciting new challenge in FIRST Robotics’ Tech Challenge.  The FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) is more than a high school robotics program.  It’s a community focused on building a better world for tomorrow by engaging high school students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).  FTC is about teaching students the value of hard work, innovation and creativity. It goes beyond competition by teaching teenagers the importance of working together, sharing ideas and treating each other with respect and dignity.  Not technically inclined? There is still a place for you in the VOCS Robotics Club!

Quick Facts:

Season Kick-Off/Potluck: September @ the VOCS Annex

Eligibility: Open to grades 9-12

Season Duration: Sep 10 through Mar

Sponsor: NASA-Armstrong Flight Research Center

Faculty Advisor: Tom Karnes

Meetings: The Club meets 3 times per week during the build season (thru mid-Jan) and once or twice per week during competition season (mid-Jan thru March). The meetings this year will be held at the VOCS Annex.

Website: rickrollers.org

More Information:
For more information, please contact lead mentor John Kelly, 661-510-4650 or jwkelly at icloud dot com.  Also see the FIRST FTC website at http://www.usfirst.org/roboticsprograms/ftc

Congratulations to our 2016 Valley Oaks Rickrollers Robotics Team!  The First Tech Challenge Rickrollers Robotics Team participated in the Los Angeles Regional Qualifying Tournament for FIRST Robotics at deToledo High School on Jan. 18. The team scored well, but the most impressive outcome of the day was the Rockwell Collins Innovate Award won by the team. This award celebrates a team that not only thinks outside the box, but also has the ingenuity and inventiveness to make their designs come to life. The team was also awarded runner-up for the Design Award and the competition’s prestigious Inspire Award, highly coveted by all FTC teams. “I am very proud of our team. They worked hard to prepare for this tournament and I am always impressed at the ingenuity of our team each year,” said John Kelly, coach and mentor. The team will participate in an additional competition on Jan. 30 with the hopes of qualifying for the league’s regional championships in February. Click here to view article on Tehachapi News.


Congratulations to our 2014 Valley Oaks Robotics team- the Rickrollers! 24 FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) robotics teams from Southern California battled it out in the High Desert FTC tournament at the Desert Christian Schools gymnasium in Lancaster, Calif., Feb. 1. The 24 teams competed on a field where four robots — one pair of robots against the others — place blocks in baskets on a balancing beam, then raise a flag, and finally hang from a bar before the end of the 2½-minute match. Team 4344, the Rickrollers, made it to the semi-finals and although not qualifying for the next competition, was named winner of the Motivate Award. The Rickrollers, team 4344, is mentored by Dryden aerospace engineer and project manager John Kelly.  To view the NASA article, click here

Robots from team 72, the Garagebots, and team 4344, the Rickrollers, compete in the FIRST Tech Challenge “Block Party” game.  Image Credit:  Courtesy PHI Robotics / Mike McMillan