Our team does this every year, coming up with a distinct award for every student. This is my first year with the team, and I won something having to do with coding, though I can’t remember the exact title (something like “Tireless Coder”). However, there have been some great ones that are completely unlike the normal robotics ones, such as “Ladies Man,” “Least Likely to Need a Doctor” (for an Apple fan), “Cincinnatus” (for our captain who was stepping down), and plenty of others that I can’t remember right now. And we’ve also done some more normal ones, like “Rookie All-Star.”
We did this a bit in our first couple of years, when we had more an “end-of-year party in the workspace” than a “banquet”. As we’ve moved towards a more formal banquet (this year catered, with a nominal fee for mentors and family members so that we get a good head count), we’ve dropped to only awards that actually are an honor. About 20% of the team will receive an award or honorable mention.
Even thinking back, I believe that most of the “mock” awards were presented by a student (or coalition of students), almost as often to mentors as to other team members. The only one that stands out was actually a serious award with a mock name - the “Tony Stark Award” was given to a particularly creative programmer who didn’t write a line of code for the cRIO - but his vision processing code on the raspberry pi has been usable for multiple games.
We have the officers put together a list of funny awards for everyone on the team and put them on paper plates, which we appropriate dub “paper plate awards”. This way we don’t leave anyone out of the awards at the end of the year banquet.
Some of my favorites include the “Certified citizen of florida award” which we gave to one of our eighth graders who the judges mistook for a senior, and the “First Lady Award”, which we gave to the president of the team’s girlfriend.
The mentors give out their own joke awards, but these are a little bit more refined, but only go to some of the students. These include awards like the golden shoes I received freshman year for my dancing and a bubble wrap suit we made for our safety captain.
We had a banquet last year and made little awards “certificates” for each member of the team. And by that, I mean five or so of us hung out at our president’s house that afternoon and made all of them by hand! Here are some of our favorites:
Compulsive Coffee Addict (mine)
FIRST Fanboy (for el presidente)
The “Hey Man” (one of our underclassmen’s catchphrase)
Batt-man (for our electrical lead, who now wears it on his team sweatshirt)
Where the Party’s At (for the kid who hosted all of our parties and various get-togethers over the season)
And many others! It was a bit of a process to come up with all of them, but we had fun with it!
I always wanted to give out a James Bond or some other spy themed reward/gag gift for head scout/scouts (I got into scouting because an older student wrote a very persuasive document that compared it to being a spy and gaining intel on the other teams).