FIRST and Syracuse - a winning combination.

Dec 15, 2017 Written by FIRST Alum and Syracuse student, Sam Meyers


Hi Everyone!

I’m sure your experience with FIRST has been as influential in your high school career as it was for me.  I was a student leader of FIRST Robotics Competition Team 2849 Ursa Major from Columbia, Maryland, and that experience inspired my interest in pursuing an engineering degree and a career in robotics and automation.

I’m currently a senior studying mechanical engineering at Syracuse University, where I co-founded and serve as President and Mechanical Lead of our Orange Robotics team.  Last semester, our team placed 8th out of 48 teams at the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Student Design Competition at Tennessee Tech University.  Our robot competed in five events by completing a 10-meter sprint, throwing a tennis ball, hitting a golf ball, climbing stairs, and lifting a weight.  Much of the design of this robot was influenced by my experience with FIRST

Sam and team

Orange Robotics is currently preparing for two competitions next semester. We are designing three robots to compete as a team in a robot soccer competition at the ASME Student Design Competition in Pennsylvania or Los Angeles.  We are also designing a robot to compete in the Mini-Sumo event at the National Robotics Competition in Ohio.

All of our robots are built in-house in the Syracuse Engineering Student Machine Shop, which is located in Link Hall.  I have been working in the Machine Shop since freshman year, and it’s been a really cool experience getting paid to design and build prototypes and projects.  The Machine Shop offers students the ability to use manual and CNC lathes and mills as well as a large array of 3D printers.  We also have another Maker Space on campus that is open to all SU students.

One of my most interesting class assignments this year is my Senior Design project.  My team is designing and manufacturing a printed circuit board delivery system for a water jet cutter.  Our Senior Design team is sponsored by ICM Controls, and we meet with them regularly to provide updates on the progress of our project.

Outside of the Engineering building, one of my favorite places on campus is the Carrier Dome.  I have had season tickets for Syracuse football and basketball since freshman year, and some of my best memories at SU have happened on the court.  We had an unbelievable Final Four run my sophomore year, and last semester we stormed the court after a buzzer-beater win over Duke.

I hope you’ll have the opportunity to visit the Syracuse campus and tour the Engineering school.  Syracuse offers great scholarship opportunities for FIRST students.  I would be happy to talk to you about my experiences here, and I would be very interested in hearing about your experiences with FIRST, too.  Feel free to email me with any questions.

Good luck with the upcoming FIRST season!




Sam Meyers
Syracuse University

Mechanical Engineering

Class of 2018

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