TecDroid 3354 is an FRC team located in our school Tecnológico de Monterrey Campus Querétaro. One of our main purposes is to motivate Queretaro’s youth to consider several career fields, with a focus on STEM fields. Also, we support them during their personal and professional development. So, they can become leaders in their field of choice, and contribute to our country's economical, laboral, and technological development.
When TecDroid 3354 started, the number of men exceeded the number of women. However, after our second season there was a shift in the number of women involved in TecDroid. Today, we are proud to say that our directive board is made up of eight women, including our team leader, out of eleven members.
Most people, including our own classmates, believe that TecDroid is only about robots, but they are very wrong. Of course, we build a robot every season, but as FIRST says, it’s more than robots. We do a lot more, from helping low income families to hosting several STEM related events.
Besides being on an FRC team, many of our teammates, including our directive board, are involved in many other extracurricular activities, such as soccer, basketball, swimming, volleyball, archery, track and field, arts, and more. We're a very diverse team, yet we're very close, like a family. We have a lot of fun together during our events, meetings, coaching sessions, and of course, FRC competitions.
We're glad that our team is growing, not only by winning several awards, but also as a team where women are just as important as men; and where our teammates can enjoy several activities that match their interests.
This blog post was written by FRC Team 3354, TecDroid. If you are interested in blogging for FIRST Ladies, click here to sign up on the schedule.
Dreams, goals, aspirations, brave, effort, faith, hope, love, not surrender and to be daring would become us in dreamers, girls that only with just wanting they can do it and now before never because we are making the chance inside FIRST.
We broke paradigms, status and stereotypes; we are changing the world in a place where STEM, Gracious Professionalism and Coopertition are a life style, there are everyday tools.
“For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology” when this name stop being a simple name and it became in your passion, it is tattooed in your soul making you fight for him, you looking for more dreamers like you than know that they would make it their life, their reason to be.
A lot of woman decided to leave it for the lack of woman leaders of STEM, but that they really still see is that is very easy to surrender, but why to not fight for be the first leaders in STEM and demonstrate that is not a requisite be part of a team where all the leaders because we could be the first.
We know that fight is not easy, but it is not impossible, is for that reason that I want when you read this, remember the sixteen year old girl passionate for the FIRST and STEM, that despite the stereotypes, is different and her want to change the world.
At the beginning I thought that it was very hard to be here just for being the only girl in the team, but later when I tried to get out I realized that I can’t, because I get used and I get my mind that I’m not the first and not even the last, but I have something that makes me unique and special.
My name is Karen and I’m the girl that not fear to what others think if they saw me playing rude with the guys because they are like my brothers, I’m the one that risk and assistance, the one that can leave a party for a night of construction and the one who can be a part of their belongings just to make not only a dream, if not the dream of all my team.
Exist the chance of not be indispensable, but I’m important because I do not keep me out of the invisibility, when I’m here not managed to be invisible and everyone notes that.
Being inside of ART 4371 I found my best friends, my older brothers, which in the good and the worst moments they would always be with me to hug me, give me a advice and do not let me down; they teach me that whatever happens we would never be separate, even I found now that I have seven adoptive mothers and is very funny because I never thought to find such good people like them, my friends, my family.
Thank you FIRST because without you I could never being who I am.
This blog was written by Karen Perez of FRC team 4371 from Mexico. If you are interested in blogging for FIRST Ladies, sign up on the schedule.
1. “I don’t want to join your team because there aren’t a lot of girls.”
When joining an FRC team, anyone and everyone is welcome to join despite the number of people that you have matching genders with. I constantly hear females coming up to me telling me that they joined the team at the school down the street because there were “No girls on the team here.” And of course my very pointed and suggestive response is always “If there are not any girls, you joining the other team is not fixing the issue.”
2. “So do you guys have anything that isn’t building? Like, what are the girls supposed to do? “
There is nothing the girls are supposed to do. I find that a majority of girls in FRC teams tend to end up doing the background work (i.e. Marketing, recruiting, fundraising etc.). Many of them enjoy the work but some of them state that it is something “all the girls do.”
3. “She can’t drive, women are horrible drivers.”
Not only is this sexist, but it takes away from the inclusiveness of the word team. I hear this one most often from veteran members that are both male and female who are used to having an all-male drive team due to that one stereotype.
4. “You’re the vice president/captain? You’re a girl though, that doesn’t make sense.”
I have personally experienced this comment after earning the title of Vice President of my former team. I sometimes hear snickers around me in the audience about how confused they are when they see a female on the field during alliance selections. A captain is a captain. A leader is a leader. Gender should not play a part in who gets to be what.
5. “I’m the only girl on the team. I should get an award.”
No one deserves an award just because they “showed up.” Someone deserves an award because of their dedication to the team’s success and commitment to the team. There are a surprising amount of females I have encountered inside and outside of the FRC community who truly believe that being the only female of the team automatically makes them better than other girls.
The reason why I wrote this post was to raise awareness about how even females force themselves into stereotypes and sometimes make the STEM community a non-inclusive place. As a female, I believe that other females and males need to make sure that the FRC/STEM community shows diversity both through gender, age race and etc. There is nothing more degrading to a human being than to have them be discriminated against over something they cannot control.
This blog was written by Michelle Le. If you are interested in blogging forFIRST Ladies, sign up on the schedule.
My name is Vivica Lewis and I live in Wisconsin. I am fourteen years old and I will be starting high school this year. This season will be my third year of participating in robotics.
With 4th of July right around the corner, I found it appropriate to blog about freedom. To begin with, it is important to define freedom. Freedom is the power to do what you want without hindrance or restraint (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/freedom). In my life, I experienced freedom when I joined the robotics program at my school. I was around people who supported creativity and encouraged outside of the box thinking! In school, students face there is one answer and the objective is to reach the correct answer. When I joined FIRST, it was this environment that encouraged unique answers, questions, and it is okay to fail as long as you find a solution.
I went from a student who knew nothing about the team to a third in the world champion. The achievement was an honor, but I was part of a team that mattered more than any award. The team, S.H.I.E.L.D. started years before I joined, but it changed when three girls joined in. Girls added a certain flair to the team. A little bit of style with matching shoes and shoelaces was added, but also new concepts for jigs. When the year started, it was just a team of students that saw each other around school. With every teamwork exercise you could see us getting closer. I will never forget at Worlds when it all came together and the last teamwork exercise we got comments about how it seemed like we forgot we were even in a judging room. It stopped just being a team that competed for trophies. It was a family that worked to achieve higher goals than winning. The secret to a team that will achieve goals in robotics and life is unity. Care, love, and sacrifice for one another.
Last year, I moved up to FTC. FTC has a twist where inspiration comes from still the coaches, mentors, supporters, teammates, but at this level even other teams help out. Not only because you have alliances, but just there whenever you need a pick me up or a tool! The Supposable Thumbs this year taught me that you influence others, but make sure to do it a positive way. The team consisted of 8th graders to high school seniors. The seniors set the tone most of the time. Being the youngest on the team, it showed me how much of an impact you can have younger students. After several FLL introduction camps, I realized my love for working with younger kids and guiding them to robotics. Most of the camps are done with students who have not seen a robot before. One team at a camp really sticks in my memory. One boy and one girl were my team and neither of them believed that they could learn programming in a few hours. The girl enjoyed programming and told me something I will never forget. She said, “I love this so much. I want this to be my job someday.” That is when it hit me how many people have not been exposed to FIRST. As members of FIRST from participants, coaches, mentors, volunteers, and supporters it is our job to spread it and open doors for others all over. Sharing it once could change someone’s future. I found freedom in encouraging others to learn!
FIRST is where I have found freedom to be different and I certainly am not discouraged for it. Thank you to the coaches, my supportive parents and sister, FIRST Ladies for allowing me to share, and my team members who are my second family. Lastly, I would like to thank the men and women that serve to give us freedom. Go out and find where you can free your mind with those who do not mind!
This blog was written by Vivica Lewis of FTC team 4106. If you are interested in blogging forFIRST Ladies, sign up on the schedule.
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