Team 121 would like to nominate David Anthony Ferreira for the Woodie Flowers award, for his incredible amount of dedication, determination and hard work for our team. Dave works everyday 8-5 as a construction worker and yet is at our work space every night pouring his heart and soul into this team. The dedication that he has shown to 121 is remarkable; the students are overwhelmed with his willingness to be a mentor and a leader to our team. He was one of the founding members of our team, as a student nine years ago. He learned under dedicated mentors back then, and is now continuing the tradition himself.
Dave is a very understanding person and will take the time to explain any question that the students have thoroughly and helps to expand on those ideas. This year we have had many new students join our team and he has made them all feel very welcome. “He took me aside at one of our first meetings and made sure I understood the game and our robot’s design” -Emily (121 junior). However, Emily is not the only student that he has helped along the way, “When I first came here, he said I could work on the robot everyday and not to be pushed around by the older kids”-Matt (121 sophomore). “He has taught me to use many of the tools and has led me in building the robot and in competing” -Kevin (121 senior).
Dave starts working with the students on ideas to build the robot minutes after the kickoff presentation is over. He helps us to develop the concepts and strategies for the most effective robot possible. “Dave is very open to suggestion and encourages everyone to contribute in the discussion” - Rob (121 junior). “He adds to other people’s ideas; his experience and expertise add to the quality of the robot” - Bridgette (121 sophomore). “He takes all of our sketches and ideas and begins to show us how to fabricate the necessary parts to produce the robot we have designed.” -Megan (121 senior). He encourages us to share our ideas in hopes that we can improve or expand on each other’s ideas. Dave demonstrates his leadership by letting us know of the projects that need to be completed, he then breaks us up into groups so that everything is accomplished and no one is left out.
Dave shows a never-ending supply of enthusiasm; even in the off-season Dave is busy spreading the ideals of FIRST throughout the state of Rhode Island. He believes that FIRST is a year round commitment, and he proves this by spending his off-season time joining 121 in demonstrating our robot at different events in the state.
Dave’s dedication to team 121 is surpassed by no one. He has inspired 121 to become more like a family instead of just a team. We all feel that he deserves this award more than words can describe. He has encouraged us to grow as a team and as individuals. “No one else’s dedication compares to Dave’s. We are gifted to have someone like him on our team” -Rob (121 junior). Dave has shown that a lot can be accomplished if you work hard and believe in yourself and everything that you do. Without Dave, 121 would not be what it is today; he is the weld that holds our team together.