Our Mentors

Our mentors act as the team's most valuable and trusted resources. Volunteering their time and energy to help our team, we would not be where we are today without them. Current Firebot mentors are:

Sohini Stone

Co-Lead Mentor

Sohini Stone is a Neonatologist (Pediatrician specializing in the care of premature and term newborns), a former member of FRC Team 151, and a former mentor of FRC Team 246. She earned her MD/MBA at Boston University, completed Pediatric Residency training at Dartmouth and Neonatology fellowship training at Stanford. She is now Associate Medical Director at Grand Rounds, along with serving as Clinical Instructor in Neonatology at Stanford / El Camino Hospital. As co-lead mentor of the Fremont High Firebots, she manages many of the non-technical aspects of our team.

David Dobervich

Co-Lead Mentor

David Dobervich was a member of FRC Team 192 in 1998. He studied Computer Science, Cognitive Science, and Philosophy at UC Berkeley, and holds a Masters in Math Education from Stanford. He teaches math and computer science at Fremont High School and assists the software sub team.

Sean Stone

Sean Stone is a former member of FRC Team 151 in 1998 and 1999 and has previously mentored FRC Team 246 in 2000 and FRC Team 1922 from 2010 to 2011. He got his BS is Electromechanical Engineering at Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston (2004) and has previously worked for Amphenol PCD, GE, Glenair and Neonode. Currently he is working at GoEngineer as a Senior Application Engineer and is the Co-Lead Mechanical Mentor for the Firebots.”

Riley Howard

Riley Howard graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a degree in Computer Engineering. He has worked at Apple for about 15 years. He supports the Firebots here and there, mostly by transporting humans and robots in his truck.

Susan Howard

Susan Howard holds a master's degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology and worked in human resources for Kaiser Permanente before taking extended time off to raise her sons. During that time she served in many leadership roles in the community with an emphasis on children and youth. Mrs. Howard is a substitute teacher for the Cupertino Union School District and also coordinates volunteers for the Fremont High School student store. She mentors in fundraising and logistics.

Pushpak Bapat

Pushpak Bapat holds a Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering and has worked as a chip designer for over two decades with video game makers and makers of networking equipment. He has been with the team since its inception and mentored electrical and software teams. He now mentors the Strategy team. He has been a Assistant Scout Master, a soccer coach, and presently helps out the school bands’ pit crew. Pushpak is interested in most sports, particularly cricket, football and basketball, as well as backpacking and camping.

Aparna Bhargava

Aparna Bhargava holds Bachelor of Engineering and did MS in Computer Science from Santa Clara University. She has worked in various startups focusing on web, mobile and voice applications. She has been a passionate mentor for FLL teams for elementary and middle schools. She is also serving as treasurer for Fremont High School PTSA. She supports FRC team 3501 "as needed".

Hersh Bhargava

Hersh serves as the software sub-team mentor for the Firebots.

Ashvin Kannan

Ashvin Kannan is a VP of Engineering at LinkedIn. He got his PhD and MS in Electrical Engineering from Boston University and a B.E (Honors) in Electronics and Communication Engineering from IIT-Roorkee.

Takumi Kawaguchi

Takumi Kawaguchi is a former member of FRC team 1678, Citris Circuits. He has been a part of the team since the 2016/2017 season. Takumi is currently a student at San Jose State University.

Jake McCann

Jake McCann is a former member of FRC team 1678, Citris Circuits. He has been a part of the team since the 2016/2017 season and he serves the position of Drive Team Captain.

Sumati Natarajan

Sumati Natarajan is a software engineer and has completed her masters degree for computer technology at Santa Clara University. She currently mentors the Firebots' software sub-team.

Sameer Nigade

Sameer Nigade is the Firebot's team's lead electrical mentor. He was formerly an electrical engineer when he majored in electrical engineering back in the 90s. Once he took on the position of lead electrical mentor, he rekindled his knowledge on electrical engineering and was able to pass on his knowledge to the electrical sub-team.

Clayton Ou

Clayton is a longtime FIRSTer, having joined the FRC team at his high school in freshman year and then going on to mentor several other teams throughout his time at UC Davis, where he graduated from with a BA in Technocultural Studies. Now, alongside maintaining a stake in multiple endeavors including a startup and a nonprofit, he continues to remain involved with Team 3501 as its lead Marketing & Public Relations subteam mentor, where he assists with all things marketing, media, and outreach.

Madhuri Ramanathan

Madhuri Ramanathan is a software architect and has completed her masters degree for computer engineering at Boston University. She currently mentors the Firebots' software sub-team.

Andres Rodriguez

Andres Rodriguez is a former member of FRC team 1538, The Holy Cows, and he previously mentored FRC team 846, Funky Monkeys, from Lynbrook High School. He has been with the team since the 2016/2017 season and he is the lead scouting mentor.

Deepali Saswade

Deepali Saswade majored in Electronics in India. She currently mentors the FLL (First Lego League) teams.

Arie Vayner

Arie Vayner is a Principle Network Engineer working for Google building google’s global network and Internet presence. He holds a BS in Computer Science and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA). As a mentor of the Fremont High Firebots, he supports the electrical and software teams.

Daniel Watson

Daniel Watson is a mentor for the Software Subteam and he has been there helping the Firebots for many seasons.