I talked to Aditi N. on Flourish & Bots FTC 12863 to get her input on this topic. Aditi has been involved with FIRST for six years and has been on Flourish & Bots teams for five years. Aditi has been able to communicate with her peers more and has ‘come out of her shell’ after being involved with FIRST. She has also learned a lot of skills that she would not have learned anywhere else, such as soldering and learning how to build different types of mechanisms on the robot. With all this knowledge she has acquired, Aditi wants to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering. FIRST has impacted Aditi’s life and will continue to impact her life in the future.
I also asked a younger girl how FIRST has impacted her life so far. This girl is Brie H. on Flourish & Bots FLL 2838. Brie is a second-year member of Flourish & Bots and this is also her second year in FIRST. During these two years, Brie has seen a significant change in how she interacts with others. Being on a team of 10 girls can be difficult at times but Brie managed to compromise with them and learn how to work well with her peers. This has translated to how Brie works with her peers at school, on sports teams, and at clubs. Brie has also noticed that she is a more confident young woman now than she was prior to being involved in FIRST. Overall, because of her time in FLL, Brie has developed valuable leadership and teamwork skills that she would not have acquired if it was not for FIRST.
The last girl I talked to is one who has been on the Flourish & Bots teams for 4 years. She is Emily R. on Flourish & Bots FLL 38323. Emily is a fourth-year member of the Flourish & Bots project. Through her involvement in FIRST she has met a lot of new people and made new connections with girls from different schools. Her communication skills have also greatly improved and she is able to voice her opinion more often after being involved with FIRST.
No matter how, FIRST has impacted every person that has been through one of its programs. This may be improved confidence, new connections made, or learning about different career paths. No matter what the impact is on a person, FIRST will always affect someone’s life.