Alumni Bio: Vinitha Ranganeni

Vinitha Ranganeni

Alumni of FRC 2064, The Panther Project

How did you get involved with FIRST and what was your experience like as a team member?

My brother was on a FLL team in middle school and I thought it was very interesting so I joined my high school’s FRC team when I went to high school. My experience as a team member was amazing, I met a ton of great people and learnt a lot from my mentors. I learned things such as mechanical design and programming that I probably wouldn’t have learned otherwise in high school.

How did FIRST impact your life and career choices beyond high school?

I am an Information Systems major and Robotics Minor at Carnegie Mellon University. I am also an undergraduate researcher at the Personal Robotics Lab. I researched improving the robustness of planning algorithms for manipulation of objects in cluttered environments. I am currently exploring multi agent mobile manipulation.

FIRST got me really interested in robotics and it was something that I wanted to learn more about. When I found out that Carnegie Mellon University had many opportunities for undergraduate students to explore robotics I knew I wanted to go there. I applied and got accepted to Carnegie Mellon and soon after beginning my freshman year, I joined the Personal Robotics Lab.

Have you or do you plan to stay involved with FIRST and if so, how?

I do continue to stay involved with FIRST. My FIRST Robotics Team had a huge impact on what I’m doing today and I want current members to have a great experience I did. I stay in touch with my team and mentor them when ever the opportunity arises.