Thank you to Microsoft for supporting FIRST Robotics Competition! Throughout the FRC season, we will get to know Microsoft-sponsored teams. This week we talked to FIRST team 6331, Sabotage from École Secondaire l’Essor in Tecumseh, Ontario.
1. What makes your team unique?
Team 6331:Our team was founded by a female mentor; therefore we are very focused on gender equality in the workplace and in STEM-related fields. We aim to provide girls positive female role models and to allow them to explore their interest in a way that encourages creativity, exchange of ideas, and to pursue their interests. More importantly, we want to change the current stereotypes and challenges that exist for women in STEM. We want our male members to grow into confident young men who aren’t intimidated by strong, smart women—men who will someday become husbands and fathers who will make a difference for women everywhere. Last year, the team participated in Walk A Mile in Her Shoes, an event which is an opportunity for men to raise awareness in their community about the serious causes, effects, and remediation to men’s sexualized violence against women. The team is looking forward to participating in this event again this year.
2. What else does your team do to encourage girls to participate in STEM activities?
Team 6331:The team packed boxes with STEM challenges which we then sent out to many schools in our community, we hoped to get girls interested in STEM at an early age. We are also participating in a STEM fair this year to promote STEM even further. In addition, we have created a series of posters that highlight the girls on our team working in the shops featuring inspirational quotes—these posters are being distributed to schools across Windsor-Essex County.
3.What do you think is the most difficult part of this year’s game POWER UP?
Team 6331: We believe that the climb is the most difficult part of this year’s game. This is because the logistics of having two or three robots climb on such a small bar will be challenging. It will be interesting to see how many teams come up with a method to pull up the other robots with them and whether this will be practical.
4.What are you most excited about for this year’s season?
Team 6331:The thing we are most excited about this year is to see how all other teams complete the tasks. We think that the human players are going to make a great difference. Therefore, the strategies the teams choose are going to be imperative to the success of their alliance. We also look forward to meeting new and old friends and generally having a good time at the district events with the other teams and our team.
5. How has the Microsoft grant helped your team?
Team 6331:The Microsoft grant is helping our team pay for our event entry fees and travel costs. In addition, because of the Microsoft grant, we were able to purchase a saw and proper toolbox for this season. The remainder of the grant will be put towards materials to improve our competition robot.
Thanks, Team 6331! We wish you the best of luck on your season and we look forward to seeing you at competitions!
Check out other Microsoft initiatives that are helping kids and youth obtain the necessary skills to participate in a world being transformed by technology.