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About Applied Dynamics Initiative

Our Mission: “To spark an interest and nurture a passion in students for participation in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, Entrepreneurship, Arts & Mathematics.” via educational classes and extracurricular activities.

Applied Dynamics Initiative came together when, through the experience of our family with our teen daughter and some of her fellow students, began developing a strong passion for technology as they were introduced to the engineering and programming concepts of robotics via the FIRST ™ Inspires organization. The enthusiasm and accomplishments we found to be positively addicting.

It all started back in 2019 when the State of NM decided to become its own First Tech Challenge region and the need for new teams was evident.

Our daughter Isabel who had participated in robotics for 3 years prior (1-year FLL and 2 years FTC & FRC in parallel) asked if we could start our own FTC team and thus a nonprofit to facilitate the program. We discussed the possibilities and future plans and then put things in motion.

Along with, her previous team’s fellow teammate, Madelene they came up with team name ENIGMA, the question mark logo, and the team colors black and green. We registered with FIRST ™ Inspires and got the team number 16265. Since we have gone on to win 3 back-to-back State Championships as Winning Alliance Team Captains, were invited to the Maryland Tech Invitational in the 2019-2020 season Skystone (ended up getting canceled due to the pandemic along with Worlds that year) and in the 2021-2022 season of Freight Frenzy won the New Mexico State Championship Inspire Award which led to an invitation to compete in the World Championship in Houston where we ended up ranked 49th in the world.

The enthusiasm and accomplishments being achieved by our students and daughter we found to be positively addicting. One example is of Isabel who before her introduction to STEM/Robotics was considering a career as an Interior Designer. Fast forward to the present and after 6 years of robotics (as graduating class of 2022) went on to be awarded the US Presidential Scholar for female in New Mexico and is now attending John’s Hopkins University with a dual major in Computer Science & Applied Mathematics. Our two other graduating program members are attending university locally and pursuing careers in the arts and law.

isabel-madelene-nexgen-presentationIt has never been clearer to us that we want their experience to be shared and the opportunity provided to other students that might not ever have the chance to be introduced to STEM/STEAM. Our research has shown that the younger you introduce students to STEM/STEAM concepts, the more likely they will stay on that trajectory towards a career in one of those fields, with the sweet spot being around the 5th, 6th and 7th grades which is especially true for girls.

Applied Dynamics Initiative is a community educational effort to introduce students and “hook them” on STEM/STEAM. This is accomplished via extracurricular activities, with a heavy focus on robotics via our ENIGMA Robotics program ( and will also include educational workshops for coding, Internet-of things product development, entrepreneurship, web development, and graphic design all meant to be in a work/life environment ( that is conducive to collaboration in flip/blended learning style.

We are always in the fundraising and partnership development stage. Our future goal includes acquiring an Industrial/Commercial space to expand our programs and workshops and to have a makerspace that we can use to teach robotics and build robots.

Applied Dynamics Initiative currently has 2 robotics programs underway with the first being a FIRST ™ Tech Challenge (ages 12-18) robotics team ENIGMA 16265 which currently has students enrolled from all over the Alb./Rio Rancho area. The second is FIRST ™ Robotics Challenge (ages 14-18) robotics team ENIGMA 9080.

Finally, we place a heavy emphasis on community outreach and would be honored to assist interested teachers, mentors and/or coaches in setting up a STEM/STEAM program for their students. For more information please contact us. Thanks for reading, Russ McCabe – Director
For more information please feel free to CONTACT US