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2013 Dean's List Essay: Scott Kent

Scott Kent's interest in science and math started long before he ever heard of FIRST or STEM, being a member of science and math clubs in elementary and middle school. Scott, shy and reserved, became a founding member of the FIRST Lego League team at his junior high. The experience of working on the design of the FLL robot and the Director's Award had a great influence on him. Scott was bitten by the FIRST robotics bug and joined Team 1912 Combustion the next year. Since then, FIRST has presented him with unfathomable opportunities to expand his interest in STEM and had a profound impact on his life and future.

Scott quickly assimilated into 1912 his freshman year, joining the challenge team dominated by upper classmen. He enthusiastically helped design and build the minibot and robot claw. For Championships, he was entrusted with complete responsibility for the batteries, ensuring a freshly charged battery for every match. During this year, Scott was also introduced to the 1912 outreach programs of volunteering for the Slidell Women's Civic Club Krewe of Slidellians Mardi Gras parade and Christmas present donation program. The FIRST year spiked Scott's interest.

Over the next year, Scott assisted with demonstrations and outreach events at Bonne Ecole Elementary, Bayou Savage clean-up; Slidell Women's Civic Club and completed an Autodesk Inventor class at Southeastern Louisiana University. He was the primary assistant to the challenge team captain. Scott designed and built one of the prototype belt driven basketball shooters. During competition, he recognized a deficiency in the pits. He took prompt action to rectify the problem, ensuring the pits were staffed by qualified personnel.

Embracing FIRST's mission of inspiring young people in science and technology, Scott increased his support for demonstrations and outreach. He met Governor Jindal and state representatives at the State Capitol; was on the planning committee for the Science and Rocket camps; volunteered with Special Olympics; attended programming lessons; helped with website maintenance; helped with sponsor appreciation visits at Michoud assembly facility and Qinetiq; National Engineering Week demo with the Louisiana Engineering Society; and will represent 1912 at the National WWII Museum Louisiana Technology Council (LTC) Robotics Revelry LTC robotics gala in March. Scott eagerly volunteered to help with a STEM camp for military children, understanding the personal challenges these children face. As a Navy brat, Scott lived in Virginia and Japan prior to moving to Louisiana. Recognizing the entire chassis team would graduate this year, Scott shifted his focus to the chassis team - building the exoskeleton and designing/building a battery tray for the rapid securing of the battery - ensuring the team will have trained chassis personnel for the future. At Jumpstart, he helped 7 teams build their chassis.

In college, Scott plans to major in aerospace engineering. He will continue to build on the interest ignited by FIRST and pass on the skills he learned from his FIRST experience as he mentors FIRST teams in the future. To complement his FIRST background, Scott is a member of the varsity cross country, tennis, and indoor track teams; Student Council representative; French Club Secretary; member of Beta Club, Mu Alpha Theta, Quiz Bowl, American Math Challenge; finished second at the State Literary Rally in Geometry; and holds a part-time job with TCBY.

Scott Kent joined 1912 three years ago as a shy, quiet young man. He has grown considerably through his four years of FIRST robotics experience, now exuding an air of confidence not previously displayed. He has a tireless work ethic and willingness to unselfishly help others. Scott is not the vocal team leader, but leads by setting the example for others to emulate. Always embodying the ideals of gracious professionalism, Scott has earned the respect of his team members and classmates - a true Ambassador for FIRST robotics.

Webmaster's Note: Scott Kent was a Dean's List Finalist at the 2013 Bayou Regional

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