We are currently recruiting for all of our programs! Meetings will be virtual until further notice due to COVID-19.

Grades 8-12

About the Program

We are currently recruiting for this team!

The W.A.F.F.L.E.S. FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) team was started in 2013 and given the team number 4476.  As an entirely community-based team, any area students in grades 8 through 12 are welcome to join!  No prior experience is required.

An FRC team is like a small business, and the technical aspects of the team are about as close to real-world engineering as you can get.  Each year in January, a new game challenge is released.  Teams then have less than two months to design, build, program, and test a 125-pound robot to compete in exciting events throughout March and April.  Robots compete on a 27′ by 52′ field, working in alliances of 3 to score as many points as possible in 2.5-minute matches packed with action.  Students work alongside community professionals, alumni, and Queen’s University/St. Lawrence College students who guide and teach as mentors.  Students are also involved with the business and non-technical aspects of the team by recruiting and fundraising, creating award submissions and presentations, doing team media and website design, and so much more.

FRC teams encompass many different skills and areas of interest–there is a place for everyone!

Technical Areas

  • Designing, machining, and assembling robot parts
  • Wiring electrical components of the robot
  • Coding autonomous and driver-operated programs
  • Repairs and iteration of all the above
  • And more!

Business Areas

  • Fundraising and sponsor relations
  • Marketing and recruitment
  • Written awards submissions and presentations
  • Team branding
  • And more!

Other Areas

  • Game analysis, match strategy, and team scouting
  • Website design, graphic design, and social media
  • Team photography and videography
  • Sewing bumpers and creating presentation props
  • And more!

Program Benefits

  • Hands-on experience with tools
  • Create a robot from scratch and compete in exciting, sports-like events
  • Work with sophisticated hardware and software such as SolidWorks (3D-modelling) and Java (programming language)
  • Work alongside mentors (professionals and FRC alumni)
  • Gain real-world, applicable experience with engineering and business
  • Make lasting friends with team members and those on other teams
  • Strengthen soft skills such as time-management, communication, teamwork, self-confidence, and so much more
  • Have access to $80 million in scholarships available exclusively to alumni of the program

Season Overview

Due to COVID-19, almost all events during the 2020 season were cancelled.  Because most teams did not have an opportunity to compete with their 2020 robots, FIRST HQ has decided that the 2021 season will be a replay of the 2020 game, but with a new twist that will be announced at kickoff.  FIRST Canada hopes to run in-person events this season if it is safe to do so.  Single day in-person events may take place during the normal competition season with a reduced capacity and extra safety measures in place.  There are also virtual competitions and contests to take part in.
May-December

Off-Season

In the off-season our team has workshops, off-season projects, and attends off-season events to introduce new members and build skills for the season.  This is a great time to join the team–no experience is required!
January-February

Build Season

A new challenge is released in early January each year, which is the start of the build season.  The build season is an intense period where our team designs, builds, and programs a new robot for the challenge.
March-April

District Events

Our team attends two district events in Ontario each year, competing with and against other teams in exciting, high-energy events.  Competitions are 2.5 days long, either Friday-Sunday or Thursday-Saturday.
April

Championships

If our team performs well, we may qualify to the Provincial Championships and the World Championships, which were most recently held in Mississaugua and Detroit, respectively.

Joining Our Team

Due to COVID-19, we are currently holding our team meetings virtually (see the calendar in the footer for times), with the hope to meet in-person later in the season while following the health and safety guidelines from the local public health unit.  We invite you to join one of our calls to learn more about us and see what we’re up to!  Send us an email for more details.

Meetings

In the off-season, our team usually meets once a week on Friday nights at our 115 Barrack Street location.  During the build season, we have meetings almost every day (but no one is expected to attend every meeting–we have loose shifts).  We recommend that members (both students and mentors) attend 2-5 meetings a week to get the most out of the program, as things progress quickly during the build season.

 

Team Communications

All of our programs communicate using a platform called Slack, which is commonly used in workplaces.  Students, parents, and mentors will receive an invitation to join Slack upon registration so that we can effectively send announcements and communicate about team meetings and events.

For Students

Cost

There is no fee to join the team, but if you are interested in having a competition role (which we strongly encourage!), then there is a fee that must be fundraised or paid.  Feel free to talk to us about accommodations and how you can fundraise.

Parental Involvement

Parental involvement is encouraged for this program.  Parents often help by making meals for the team, helping to organize accommodations for competitions, or stepping into a mentor role.  Ask us if you aren’t sure how to help!

For Mentors

We are always looking to expand our team of mentors.  If you’re interested in mentoring for any one of the areas listed on this page, then send us an email and let us know!

Interested in Joining?

We are always looking for new students and mentors!  The best way to get involved is to come to one of our meetings.  No experience is required for students!  Contact us at info@wafflesrobotics.com for more details.

Above is a recap from our 2019 season, which gives you a bit more of a look at competitions and our team at events!  Check our our channel for more videos.