Town Hall Meeting Video

For those who weren’t there or are looking to review it, 1640’s head mentor recorded the Town Hall meeting on the 2017 Half-World Championships. Please feel free to use it in your discussions.

Huge thanks to 1640 for this. Everybody should watch the Town Hall - it gives a very clear statement of what FIRST’s priorities and nonpriorities are.

Ah, thanks so much! I was looking for something like this. Can’t wait to watch.

I know there is a powerpoint. Siri

a) do you know where it is
b) if so could you put it in the video description?
c) if not, does anyone else know where it is?

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Unfortunately I don’t. The closest I’ve seen is IKE’s notes on the matter, which cover at least some points. Cross-quoted from the preparation thread:

Thank you so much for taking the time to do this, and to upload it to YouTube. I hope to share this with some of our important team members :slight_smile:

A few photos and snapchats exist of the powerpoint slides. I can try to compile them tomorrow.

I’ve posted photographs of the slides here:

Thanks for the slides. Was kinda hard to keep hearing “slides”.

I haven’t watched the entirety of this video yet, but based on what I’ve picked up so far, the attitude and answers of those on stage do not represent anything close to servant leadership, which I believe an organization like FIRST deserves.

Thanks very much to those who were able to attend the meeting and made their voices heard.

Edit after watching; I’m left with little to no additional understanding as to why FIRST felt that the Championsplit was the best solution to the goals that they outlined (which we basically already knew). Killing half the allotted time repeating the contents of the announcement and rambling about airlines was not a good use of anyone’s time. Some of the patronizing non-answers are what I’d expect to hear from politicians, not the people we place our faith in to lead FIRST. Mike’s question about involving key people in the community in this decision was never really answered in any sincere way.

Two moments I wanted to point out in the video:

  1. When the moderator talks over Shaun McNulty while he’s asking a question:

  2. When the moderator questions Mike Corsetto, after he fairly got back in line after asking his original question:

Thank you!

How about showing a little of that Gracious Professionalism they were asking the audience members to exhibit…

I could also point out longwinded and not particularly constructive comments likening this separation to a divorce, as well as the tendency of many of the questioners to preface a two sentence question with a minute of story time.

Many of the community members could have taken a lesson in gracious professionalism from the people on stage. The panel never failed to answer questions respectfully, even when those questions were only partially veiled personal attacks.

The valid points made by many of the community members present were overshadowed by their combatative phrasing. I find it unfortunate that the community seems to have used this meeting more as a time to vent at the higher ups in FIRST than to engage in a constructive dialogue about the future of this program that we all hold so dear.

I love this program, and I’m not a fan of the two championships concept, but watching this meeting was incredibly frustrating for me, watching people that I hold in incredibly high esteem behaving in ways that remind me more of bickering children than of people out to change our world. The entire world is not your team, and we all have distinct challenges and advantages. It’s very important in my opinion to look at the championship split in the greater context of a growing FRC program and FIRST’s stated goals-- districts in the US (and probably eventually elsewhere), the desire to keep the current feel of championships as more than just the FRC World Championship, and the likelihood of an eventual three-tiered model similar to FTC. From a road-map perspective, this is the inevitably awkward transition stage as we move FRC from a widely-spread but still mostly unknown competition to a fixture both in the USA and the world. A few years of dual championships is a price I’m willing to pay while we wait for our state, national, and global programs to mature to a point where can truly say that our championship is the superbowl of smarts.

I definitely am not implying that every single person asking a question handled themselves well. That being said, I am at least a little taken aback at the defensive nature of the moderator/panel.

I have to disagree with you here. I felt that even some of the more “combative” members prompted some well-thought out questions and were intending to provoke some meaningful discussion. The panel knew people would be frustrated, and I’m not exactly sure what kind of response they were expecting. Bringing a decision to the community without community involvement, adding non-negotiables and leaving the room with the impression that nothing is to change is certainly disconcerting…

My thoughts of these individuals certainly didn’t change because of it. One of the biggest things that has the community inspired by these mentors is their PASSION. I didn’t see what was presented as childish bickering, I saw them expressing legitimate concerns and asking important questions, while not receiving answers in return. I felt those that spoke represented the views of the community well and I’m thankful that they were able to speak, for whatever good it may do us in the long run…

Many of the people speaking have been on several, if not a handful of (successful) teams over the course of their FIRST careers. While no single individual is going to be able to capture the perspectives of the entire community, I think they need to be cognisant of the impact of the decisions they are making and consult those with different perspectives. I’m grateful that Don is doing his best to reach out to and speak with teams as he travels, but that is not enough for him or the board to weigh in on the perspectives of all of FRC either. Not consulting mentors/alumni and knowing that these demographics are not well-represented on the board is disappointing.

While I’m not happy with the decisions that have been made/are being made, I’m even less happy with the processes that are being used to reach their conclusions.

Thanks to everyone that represented the community at the meeting, I wish I would have been able to get to that part of the dome at the time. Thank you 1640 for providing us with footage, until FIRST releases theirs along with a summary/statement.

Very discouraged by teams who believe that being the winner is the goal of the program. Especially coming from Mentors. Of course we all would love to win. That is not the core of FIRST as one speaker at the town hall mistakenly stated. It’s time for teams to reevaluate the core goals of FIRST. You’re sliding down the slippery slope to where athletics has landed. I have witnessed mentors explode over the results of a match. What message does that send? It breaks my heart to see this. In reality, many teams will still not qualify for the championships due to the lack of resources that are available to them. Maybe we should be more concerned about this than where we will be competing or how many trophys we can collect. In addition, I’ve lived near Detroit and have spent time in Detroit. It will be a fantastic venue!

Push districts…

This is what is going to need to happen. The Super regional model looked legit, but with the slow adoption of districts it has forced FIRST’s hand. The graph was very enlightening for me. The “good old days” had a much larger percentage of teams at worlds than today.

Ironic that Mike C. stated his goals are to win a Championship and now they have…

Just an observation, no offense intended…

We all agree that inspiring students is the goal. Where we disagree is how to get there. I believe that success on the field (Winning) is the most effective way to inspire. From that success inherently comes a positive experience for students and lots of learning. Other people believe that inspiration comes from letting students design and build the robot and run the team and don’t necessarily pay attention to the results on the field is the best way to inspire.

Teams, of course, have the right to operate how they wish. I don’t think it’s fair though to judge mentors and that feel differently than you do.

To me, this issue has a very strong connection with the previous one. Some teams, not all, but some teams struggle to find additional sponsors, mentors, recruit students ETC because they don’t pay attention to the results on the field. I’m sorry but few people want to be apart of a team that struggles year after year.

I’ve spent a lot of time reading and studying the book ‘The Five Dysfunctions of a Team’ by Patrick Lencioni

The pyramid below outlines the book in a sense. The top of the Pyramid is ‘Inattention to Results’. Success matters.

As I said, teams have the right to run themselves how they see fit. Don’t judge how other mentors and students choose to run their teams.