If you still don’t know who we are, here is a picture of us at the FIRST Ladies Conference in June. I'm the super cute one in the back and Crystal is the weirdo with glasses in the middle.
We met each other in 2012 at the Minnesota FTC State Championship and when we moved into the dorms freshman year, we realized we were neighbors! It was really nice to have a familiar face down the hall and we even realized our dads worked together - small world!
Living with friends is cool, but living with friends you met through FIRST is even cooler. We thought it might be fun to share some memories about our experience.
Crystal: I am pursuing a BS in Mechanical Engineering and a BA in Computer Science.
Claudia: I am pursuing a BFA in Graphic Design, a BS in Product Design, and a minor in Mandarin Chinese.
Did FIRST have any impact on your decision to study that?
Crystal: Yea it did. FIRST was what exposed me to the world of engineering and I never looked back.
Claudia: I actually started out as a prospective mechanical engineer but when that didn’t work out, I turned to the only other thing I was good at which was design. I did both mechanical and design work when I was in FIRST so ultimately FIRST impacted both decisions.
What’s the best part about living with someone who was in FIRST?
Crystal: Robotics is a huge part of my life and it’s awesome to have someone who immediately understands that part. For example, when I remember a robotics moment I don’t have to start with the “what are robots?” speil I can just start freaking out and Claudia just gets it. It’s also fun to have someone living with you that you can drag into your various FIRST related projects.
Claudia: Honestly having someone to rant to about robotics is the best. As a design student, most of the people I come in contact with have never heard of robotics so it’s nice to just freak out about a rule change or game release with someone who ‘gets it.’ The rides to game releases and competitions are also really really nice.
What’s the worst part about living with someone who was in FIRST?
Crystal: This probably comes with just having roommates in general but Claudia sees A LOT of my awkward and weird moments. She even is able to mock the way I freak out to a T.
Claudia: Crystal knew me since I was a sophomore in high school. Let’s just say I was still figuring myself out and it wasn’t pretty.
What’s your favorite memory of living with each other?
Crystal: Staying up late on Mondays to watch Rupaul’s drag race even when there is class the next day.
Claudia: Crystal showed me the world of bubble tea and I’ve been forever changed.
What’s something that surprised you about the other?
Crystal: Claudia is very passionate about the things she does. I always knew she was super energetic but man when she gets involved in something, she just goes all out. It’s really impressive.
Claudia: Crystal is really studious. I mean the girl wakes up at 6am on a Saturday just to do homework. I’ve lived with her for a year and I still don’t understand.
Anything else you would like to add?
Crystal: One of the coolest things about rooming with another FIRSTer has just been the change in our relationship. Claudia and I met through FIRST but living together is how Claudia grew to be one of my closest friends (even if we are constantly giving each other a hard time).
Claudia: Crystal is one of my closest friends in the sense that she is a weenie. Most people probably think we hate each other because we are always giving each other a hard time, but that’s just what our friendship language is.
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