The end of RoboPride 2781

Last night the school I teach at announced they will be closing the doors at the end of this school year. This announcement marks the end of RoboPride 2781, the team I’ve lead for four years.

RoboPride is the most established all-girls team in Illinois. This year we will graduate five members into alum status. The rest of our team members futures are uncertain, but we are working to help them find security in the face of this loss.

It was our mission to bring to light the opportunities of engineering to young women everywhere we went. I hope somehow this mission continues beyond RoboPride. I am proud to have had this unique experience, and I can’t really explain fully how it changed me.

RoboPride will compete in this years game. It will be an interesting experience to know this is our last hurrah. The team has been making huge strides in the last few years. I’m really hoping for our first championship berth.

Anyways, keep an eye out for a great new team from the Chicago area next year. I don’t know where I’ll land, but I know I’ll be involved in FIRST again. (If you know of any leads, I’d appreciate it)


If the school is closing, you may want to start working now to transition the program into a community-based or 4-H team so those opportunities can remain available for the current team members. Hopefully everyone on the team will land on solid footing, both inside and outside of FIRST!

That was a thought, but logistically, it makes sense for me to look into the north suburban schools. It would be a long drive for me, and I would be surprised if someone else took this on. I am going to direct my students to local schools that have a program, or might be willing to start a team.

Thanks for the well wishes!

RIP Queen of Peace, which for some reason is what y’all were called on Gear it Forward (I mean, it’s the school, but that still doesn’t actually explain why). I remember scouting with you all a few years ago, you were fantastic to work with and have always given me the impression of being a professional, hard-working team. Hopefully, I’ll be home for Midwest, and can see you guys in your (probably) last season. Best of luck to you and your students!

I’m sorry for your your team closing ROBOPRIDE,but our team has the same story. We were originally part of a high school team, average joe’s, but we were later shutdown by the school. We then formed into a community team and now we are part of 4-H. Although you h=may have to shutdown your team, u still have the chance to make a new community team which has a higher chance of receiving more members.

Best of luck to you guys and your future in frc
Yash :smiley:

I’m sorry that this is happening to your school and team. I’ve been a huge fan of 2781 since moving to Chicago, and always look forward to seeing your team at events. One of my favorite memories was talking with them at IndyRAGE two years ago; they were the only Illinois team there, and I was so happy to see some great FIRST ladies representing us! The students were so friendly and were gracious professionals. Two of my best friends from college are also RoboPRIDE alumnae.

Best of luck with the rest of this season; I really look forward to seeing you all at Midwest. I’ll be hoping that your students get the chance to experience the FIRST Championship while they’re still on a team.

Thanks! “Oswego” has been an inspiration for our team every year. I had the pleasure of spectating at champs for RecycleRush, and it was a blast to see you guys on Einstein.

It’s only the end if you are going to accept it is the end. Becoming a 4-H team is easy. And any of your corporate sponsors can go with you because you are a 501.c.3. It’s just a tax ID number.

And 4-H Foundation has a grant program to support teams. It’s probably not going to make up for the money the school gave you but it’s something. And being 4-H may open opportunities you overlooked before. A lot of people look at 4-H and think its all about farming (even though it’s not). But a quick google of robotics in agriculture and you may find companies that are investing in the very technology we are teaching these kids to use. Drone tractors, color identification on produce, GPS mapping…

Find an industrial park or a vacant mall for a build space.

Stay in the game. Good Luck.

Sorry to hear about your team shutting down. I’m sure it provided many years of encouragement, fun, and learning for your members.

Even though it may not be an option for your team in particular, I echo the encouragement for teams to consider switching to a community team when the school is unable to continue.

2706 was formed when the teacher running 2994 had to take a temporary hiatus in 2015. He encouraged us to form a new community based veteran team with the existing mentors and students, and that’s what we did! Not only were we able to continue FRC for the students of that school, but we now have students from a dozen other schools as well. 2994 is back this year and now there are two FRC teams in our region. Everyone wins!

Now that nearby St. Laurence is going coed and may absorb some of your students, it would be timely for your team to make a pitch to their administrators and STEM faculty. Invite them to Midwest to see your team and the program in action. Attending a regional is exciting and may help influence their decision. You have 9 years worth of experience (and robot parts!). The team needs a mindset of rebranding vs shutting down.

Send me a pm about job leads in the northern 'burbs. Lots of FIRST supporters there.

Email sent!