The Walton Robotics communications department is in charge of spreading the image of our team as far as possible. This may not seem like the most daunting task, but there are actually many different functions of the department that require year-round attention. Without the communications department, our team would not be able to get the word out about events we are hosting, such as the FLL Tournament, DE Scrimmages, and Outreach events. Also, without communications, the team could not update students/parents/teachers about what the team is working on, what we have accomplished, etc. The skills learned from the communications department will help our students out not just with team activities, but also in their future, with processes such as public speaking, networking, etc.
The first aspect to the communications department is photography and videography. Our team takes thousands of pictures from events and competitions each year in order to update our followers, and it creates and thoroughly edits 4-5 videos a year for sponsors, stakeholders, Chairman’s Award, etc. The department holds non-mandatory trainings to teach students the basics of taking photos or video and a more advanced training session for kids who wish to learn how to edit videos, add music, photoshop, etc. The team also manages social media accounts which are run by the coach and the head of the communications department. Our Facebook and Twitter pages have a total of over 1,000 followers, and we keep these followers updated by posting at each event, competition, camp, etc. To view our Facebook and Twitter pages, please select the “social media” buttons on the footer of our website. The department also manages a media account with all our past photos and videos. To view our photos and videos in our Smugmug and YouTube accounts, please select the “Media” menu at the top of our website.
Another extremely important aspect to the department is, of course, this website. The continued use and update of this website is crucial to keep sponsors, stakeholders, and the community tuned in to our team. The department also holds a training session for website editing, should it interest any members of the team. The Communications Director is in charge of training his or her assistant in website editing for when they become Director.
The third aspect to the communications department is our mascot, Walt. We give out paper Walts at events and competitions, and on the back of Walt is information about FIRST and our team. The department is in charge of maintaining the most effective design of Walt, as well as distributing Walts, Robot Cards, and other promotional items to other teams and the community.
The fourth aspect of the communications department is essay writing. The department teaches students essay writing skills that will greatly benefit them in their careers. Communications team members write multiple newsletters and eBlasts over the year that are sent to sponsors, school board members, teachers, etc. Also, during competition season, members of the communications department work in the Awards Team to write both short and long essays that may earn them awards such as Entrepreneurship, Engineering Inspiration, and hopefully, Chairman’s.
The fifth and final aspect to the communications department is the “print and broadcast media” aspect. For major events such as the East Cobber Parade, the FLL Tournament, and the Georgia State Championship for robotics, our team reaches out to newspapers such as East Cobber and Marietta Daily Journal, as well as TV Broadcasting sites such as 11 Alive, to make sure there is a story about each of these for the public to read about. Communications members will also apply their essay writing skills here as well.
With so much to worry about during the year, communications may seem unnecessary, but without it, teams may never receive any recognition for all their hard work in the field of STEM. Our communications department continues to propel our team toward a bright future each and every day.
- CBS (Craig Bell – Peachtree)
- ESPN (Tshirt cannon)
- PBS (SciTech Now, BattleBots, T-shirt Cannon feature @ football game)
Brazil coverage (tv, print, social media)
- Featured on Rede Globo- 2nd largest commercial network in the world
- Jornal Vanguarda News, a Brazilian new station featured the team’s work at a summer camp in Pinda Brazil in 2015.