Monday, June 27, 2005

la vida robot

Back in April Wired ran a story about four kids from Arizona who kicked some serious butt at a national robotics competition. The article, "La Vida Robot" told the story of four kids living in one of the less picturesque parts of the country. Two teachers at their school decided to start a robotics club and when they actually got some members entered them in a national competition.

As on of the teachers explained, they skipped the high school division and competed against college teams because "they figured their students would lose anyway, and there was more honor in losing to the college kids." Except that they didn't lose. They won the whole thing.

I sat there reading the article which explains how brilliant these kids are and how none of them qualify for financial aid for college because they are all illegal immigrants. One went back to hanging drywall. Another had a future of subsistence farming to look forward to. I sat there reading thinking, "Someone, please send these boys to college."

Well the world is a little brighter today. Someone did.

I saw a little update in the June issue of Wired tonight. So far $57 000 in scholarship money has come in for these guys and the producer of ER and The West Wing wants to make a movie. If everything goes well, if the statistics manage to hold off just for a little while Lorenzo Santillan, Cristian Arcega, Luis Aranda and Oscar Vazquez are going to college.

I wonder if their parents ever really thought it would happen as they drove through the night in the trunk of a station wagon? America has not always lived up to its potential, but tonight I have to say, nice work. For more information about the college fund see La Vida Robot Scholarship Fund.

Here's to the dreamers. . .

If you are a dreamer, come in,
If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar,
A hope-er, a pray-er, a magic bean buyer
If you're a pretender, come sit by my fire
For we have some flax-golden tales to spin.

Come in! Come in!
~Shel Silverstein

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Claire! Janie here. I totaly forgot about the blog thing until today when i saw that susan naus has a blog
There are cute julia pics up there! I am not responding to your post, but i thought i would say hello. I am eating whipped cream by the spoon full cause it tastes the best that way! Don't tell dave. Anyway, i think i might have to start bloggggin again, but i don't remeber my pass word. I am sure i will figure it out though! check mine out and see if i have posted anything.
took me forever to remeber what the heck i named it. sometimes it would be easier if my mind were just a little filling cabinet that was attached to me; i really would find things easier in there! Take care
Janers and davers and growing one!