Team Suriname 2020 🇸🇷

From Suriname to Washington DC (in 2017), to Mexico City (in 2018), to Dubai (in 2019) and now, in 2020, we go virtual! Robotics Team Suriname has been there since the start of the FIRST Global Challenge (FGC) and continues to build robotics and innovation skills reaching about 410 young people since 2017 in face-to-face sessions while growing awareness about the importance of STEM and Robotics for our future.

This year’s team consists of 9 ‘new’ students (6 male and 3 female) who are a beautiful representation of the different ethnicities of Suriname:

  1. Consuêlla Benschop (F) is a Youth Ambassador and loves cooking, baking, singing, reading and spending time with her family. She wants to study international business and believes that in a constantly progressing world like ours, we need to change along to stay updated. She encourages others by sharing that ‘we can only bring a change in this world if we allow ourselves to learn more and progress’.
  2. Eros Bianchi (M) has an interest in ICT and Robotics. His hobbies include photography, longboarding, drones, BJJ, and gaming. He also plays the guitar and the piano. The latter he taught himself during pandemic and now he can also play some of his favorite songs.
  3. Jamil Kromokarijo (M) enjoys singing, playing guitar, basketball and photography. He is a tech enthusiast and currently an electrical engineering student. For him Robotics is a combination of mechanical & electrical engineering along with computer science, which allows him to learn about different fields that Jamil finds to be important for creating more opportunities for himself. He is thankful for the knowledge and the new contacts he has made in this years’ challenge.
  4. Jamir Daiman (M) is an ICT student and is interested in Robotics because to him it combines all the different aspects of ICT in which he is interested. His hobbies are anime and reading light novels. During pandemic he taught himself to play the piano using YouTube and other online resources. In the future he wants to own a business that helps more people (afford to) build their own computer.
  5. Kevin Cai (M) has volleyball and anime as hobbies. Later he wants to study Electrical Engineering in the Netherlands. He sees STEM as a tool for making life easier for everyone. Kevin has a passion for the preservation of the Suriname Amazon Rainforest. Four years ago, he taught himself via YouTube to make little artificial trees using wire and sponge. To him they symbolize the immortality of Suriname’s nature.
  6. Shyfka Landveld (F) loves dancing, singing, karate, athletics and coding. She wants to become a software engineer and own her own company. Robotics has captured her interest so she wants to grow her knowledge in this area. Shyfka believes that STEM education will help her achieve what she wants in a career and that she can do anything she puts her mind to.
  7. Siemran Jankie (F) has always been interested in ICT especially coding and databases. Every time she tried to learn something in the field, she ended up doing something else like photography or biology, but the interest in ICT remained. Currently she is studying Audio Visual production. In the future she wants to become a director and share her own and other perspectives on fiction and facts.
  8. Taufiq Shyamnarain (M) loves coding and building fun technical stuff. He would like to own a company that develops any kind of software desired. He believes that STEM will provide him with the foundation needed to achieve his goals. Taufiq shares what he calls his most important life lesson: ‘live and enjoy life as long as you are here on earth, because everyone has to go one day’.
  9. Youri Karijopawiro (M) enjoys gaming, reading fantasy books and programming. He looks forward to developing his programming skills within Robotics. He loves challenges and having the opportunity to be creative in solving problems using software. During pandemic he taught himself to code using C++. He also likes to play sandbox games/Minecraft and has designed a simple game or two using C#.


The 2020 FG Suriname Robotics team is mentored by FG Suriname Alumni:
Lead mentor: Shayant Sital (2017 FG Alum & Team Captain)
Senior mentor: Ayan Jhagroe (2017 FG Alum & Robot Builder)
Senior mentor: Ivana Codrington (2017 FG Alumna & Robot Builder)

Supported by Junior mentors: Lesley Uiterloo, Seth Tjokrodimedjo, Joel Naarendorp (all three 2018 FG Alumni) and Peer mentor Jeremy Richaards (2019 FG Alumn). The mentor team has Daniel Lachman, the former Lead mentor as their Advisor.

Ashna Mahepal is the Team Manager supported by Project Coordinator, Shivani Jhagroe. Both are the official team contacts for FIRST Global and have been involved since the inaugural games 3 years ago.

While no teams are physically travelling this year due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, Foundation YHS, the official counterpart of FG in Suriname, found it important that Suriname is represented on the FGC 2020 ‘Connecting Communities’ virtual platform. Not only because FG helps the students connect with like-minded peers and grow their circle of (international) friends, but it also enables students to recognize (future) opportunities, triggers them to think BIG and find open doors for global collaboration. But above all it instills a sense of pride to be able to exchange knowledge and represent your country amongst 170+ countries with a hope that one day our students will make an impactful contribution towards solving a real-life problem in our shared future.

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