"Through hands-on exposure to STEM, students become critical thinkers, skilled technicians, and leaders of innovation."

FIRST Team 585 Vision

FIRST Team 585

The Tehachapi High School Robotics Club, FIRST Team 585, the Cyber Penguins, is an extracurricular program that meets after school and on weekends. Our team members work year-round to participate in robotics competitions and to provide free STEM based opportunities for our community.

Founded in 2001 as a NASA Home Team, FIRST Team 585 competes in the FIRST Robotics Competition each year. Students work for six weeks to build a 120-pound robot to play in a competitive/cooperative game on a basketball court sized field with five other robots. The students strategize, design, build, program, and operate their robot at competitions with up to 50 other high school teams. Through this experience, team members gain skills with industry standard manufacturing, electrical, programming, and safety processes. Working with our students, mentors from industry sponsors and the community at large support student learning and growth as they help them achieve their goals.

To encourage younger students in Science, Technology, Math, and Science (STEM), members of FIRST Team 585 reach out to our community with a variety of programs. Our key, annual programs include LEGO Summer Camps, Super Science Saturday, the Hour of Code, and our Junior Robotics program. Students also visit our local elementary schools to offer assemblies and workshops, host booths at sponsor events, and reach out to neighboring commuities to support their efforts in STEM education. 

"In partnership with our school, community, and industry, FIRST Team 585 provides opportunities for students of all ages to learn skills in STEM through hands-on experiences and exposure to applications of engineering."

FIRST Team 585 Mission

Justin - VP of Outreach

Justin has been a member of FIRST Team 585 since his freshman year at THS. As a freshman, Justin immediately jumped in to outreach and programming, where he’s been an integral member of the team ever since. As VP of Outreach, Justin is not only in charge of organizing and managing our programs for youth, but is also responsible for leading the team and coordinating our major fundraisers.

Chloe - President

Chloe has been part of FIRST Team 585’s programs since our first LEGO Summer Camp over seven years ago. A terrific programmer and problem solver, Chloe is also a talented leader who jumps in to help wherever she is needed. Since her Freshman year, Chloe has run our LEGO Summer Camps and served as the VP of Outreach in the 2018 Season. As president, Chloe is a fair and inspiring leader whose enthusiasm for learning, and teaching, new skills motivates all members to do their best.

Julian - VP of Robot

Julian joined FIRST Team 585 as a sophomore, under the encouragement of his sister, Jelly, then the team president. Ever since, Julian has been a role-model for all students, learning new skills, persevering through challenges, and striving to build his capabilities in leadership, engineering, and entrepreneurship. Julian is a champion for awareness opportunities for all children through STEM and has reached out to local and national leaders to promote STEM awarenss at all levels.

About Tehachapi, CA

Tehachapi is located at the pass through the (Southern) Sierra Nevada Mountains at the southeast boundary of California’s Central Valley. Tehachapi has a decreasing population estimated to be 13,000 in 2015. The Tehachapi Unified School District serves an area that includes approximately 35,000 people spread over 522 sq. mi. The “land of four seasons,” Tehachapi is home to wineries, mountain biking, wind farms, an airport and a glider port. A place for getting out and enjoying nature, Tehachapi is about an hour’s drive from Edwards Air Force Base, Bakersfield, and the Antelope Valley.

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How our Team Operates

FIRST Team 585 is a student run organization. Over the past several years, the team has built a culture that values nurturing skills in all members and in future members through hands-on mentoring. Team members teach and encourage each other in technical skills while also volunteering in various STEM related programs throughout the year. 

Our team operates in such a way that our more experienced members pass down their knowledge and teach the new members the skills that they have built through experience. New members will start off learning safey regulation, becoming familiar with tools and terminology, and start building their technical knowledge. As members progress, they start learning techniques, how to assemble parts and structures, and start focusing in on a particular field that they are interested in. Then our most experienced members will lead teams, delegate tasks, and teach less experiance members. Above team leaders we have the President and the Vice Presidents. Due to our extensive outreach programs, we have one Vice President of Outreach, in charge of orginizing all of our key events; one Vice President of robot, in charge of deligating task to the team leaders, competetion organization, and technical training; and one President who oversees everything. Then our Advisor keeps in contact with the school district, the high school administration, and our industry partners.