FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Team 8808, the Southwest Louisiana (SWLA) Tech Pirates, was originally formed in 2021 by Stephen Vidrine, Ellen Bradley, and students at Alfred M. Barbe High School. The team called themselves the “Barbe Tech Pirates”. The high school team began with 11 members who turned the upstairs gymnasium space into the robotics lab. After one season, Team 8808 has expanded to proudly welcome the Region 5 Parish area (Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, and Jeff Davis), consisting of public, private, and homeschooled students in 9th-12th grade. The team consists of 25+ members and 3 mentors. Our team’s name is unique to Southwest Louisiana. Almost three centuries ago, a pirate named "Jean Lafitte" and his band of buccaneers were fleeing enemy ships and heading west to Galveston, TX. Legend has it that Lafitte & his band of buccaneers would hide out along the waterways in Lake Charles, LA. Legend also has it that Jean Lafitte's favorite hideout was Contraband Bayou in Lake Charles where his treasure (silver & gold) was hidden and buried by Lafitte in his favorite hideaway Contraband Bayou and hence given why the bayou is named Contraband Bayou.
Hear from our team and other team members from the 2022 Bayou Regional on why FIRST is inspiring and helping our youth for the future!
SWLA Tech Pirates Mission: Our mission is to shape and develop students with skills in engineering, teamwork, leadership, and to inspire students to be creative and innovative in an ever-so changing world of technology.
We allow all parishes in Region 5 an opportunity to build upon conventional forms of advancing STEM education with science, technology, engineering, and math. This program will impact private, public and homeschool students from 8th–12th grade with skills including building inside and outside of the regular classroom setting and working as a team.
If you are interested in helping the SWLA Tech Pirates please feel free to contact us at any time or click the link below to be taken to our sponsor letter. On behalf of everyone at SWLA Tech Pirates, we thank you for your generous support!
If you are interested in joining the crew aboard the SWLA Tech Pirates Ship please click below to complete the interest form. We will have an interest meeting before the start of the 2023-2024 school year.
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