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Sargent gets national recognition, accepts internship through FIRST

David Sargent was nationally recognized as a Dean's List Award recipient for FIRST Tech Challenge. Students were nominated by their team mentors and were chosen based on their leadership skills, long-term commitment to FIRST ideals and the effectiveness in increasing awareness of FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) within their schools and communities.

Sargent will receive a written recommendation from FIRST to the colleges or employers of his choice, tuition and room/board for the WPI Frontiers summer session, and an invitation to attend an all-expense paid trip to the FIRST Dean’s List Award Winners Summit at FIRST Headquarters in Manchester, N.H., this summer. Oklahoma has been participating in FIRST Robotics for 16 years. Sargent is only the second from Oklahoma to make the Dean's List Award winners.

Matt Moore, FIRST Robotics coach, said thousands upon thousands of teams from around the world participate in FTC and FRC robotics. Each team may nominate two outstanding students for the Dean's List Award but only 240 are selected as finalists. From those, 20 are chosen.

"David won because of his leadership and dedication to learning," Moore said. "He is actually famous among students around the world for the help he provides online with programming issues both for FTC and FRC teams. When I was with David at the World Championships in St. Louis, we were speaking with Thomas Eng, the head engineer for FTC at FIRST robotics. When David introduced himself, Mr. Eng said, 'dmssargent!' A nearby student’s eyes grew large as he asked David, 'Are you dmssargent?' Students and adults alike were excited to meet “dmssargent," which is David's online username."

Sargent's accolades began arriving earlier this year as he won the first and third rounds of the Microsoft "Imagine This" contest for software developers. It's a national contest for students from FIRST robotics teams. For the first contest, Sargent programmed a Java script based Java editor. It runs fully client-side, in the browser. Round three was a machine learning challenge. Sargent created software to rate movies based on their twitter traffic. He has also accepted an internship with FIRST robotics for the upcoming year. He will be working with an engineer from Google to develop and improve the robot control software the teams use.
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