The world is full of great people, and I am glad to have met one of the best, Evan Morrison. During the past four years, Evan has led our team to accomplish many amazing feats on and off the field. Evan truly embodies the core values for FIRST and Apex Robotics.
Evan Morrison started his FIRST career during 2005 on team 971 in Mountain View, California. He was on team 971 for two years when he graduated high school and went on to mentor various other teams including 190, 1983, and 971. Evan is also a founding member of the RoboSports Network, a live Twitch stream that can be described as “ESPN for robotics.” Evan has been dedicated to FIRST for more than a decade, giving him the experience that has shaped him into the reliable mentor that he is today.
Evan’s experience and dedication to FIRST has made him a respected part of our Apex community. His wide-ranging experience gives our relatively young team a unique view of FIRST. His ability to apply previous solutions to future problems has given our team multiple creative solutions to otherwise difficult obstacles. Since Evan is also a FIRST alumnus, he also understands that mentors can sometimes be a little too watchful, so he developed a way of running this fantastic team that relies on us, the students. To keep this team running Evan gives large tasks to groups of students to tackle together, along with the support of the other mentors to help us along the way.
Evan gives us a lot of room to work, allowing us to follow our own plans without him pressuring us to work on what his ideas for the robot are. He firmly believes that “all ideas are worth investigating” because even the most outlandish idea could cause us to make it all the way to Einstein. Evan always puts the student’s designs for the robot above his own. Even if he thinks the idea is risky, he will support us no matter what. An example of this was during week 1 of the 2018 build season. We were thinking of prototypes, and someone thought of the idea to have upper and lower rollers to suck in the cubes. It seemed very different to what others had envisioned, but Evan decided we should give it a try and that intake was actually quite successful.
Evan has sacrificed so much for our team including splitting his life between his full-time job at Boeing and being here to help us work on the robot and fix any problems that may arise. Over the 2018 summer break, our head coach, Stephanie Morrison, had some personal issues that forced her to step down from her primary role in our team. Evan was instantly there to help us out despite a hectic schedule. As always, he was first to volunteer to run this well-oiled machine that is Apex Robotics. Even though he has such a full schedule, he has accomplished many things for our team. Some of those include helping us develop our CAD skills and just our overall engineering skills. Without Evan, our team would not have made all the fantastic robot designs that we have.
Evan is one of the founding members of our team and without him, our team would look very different. He has contributed so much to each person on Apex by constantly motivating us, always communicating clearly what his ideas are, and just always being an amazing person. Speaking on behalf of everyone on Apex Robotics, we hope you pick Evan Morrison as the next Woodie Flowers award winner.