Two teams, one school - Good idea?

Us Pirates have an opportunity to start another team. It will be an all girl team. We want to do it but will it be a good idea?

We’ve spoken about it and know some things for sure: We will be sharing the same machine room and tools. The only thing I’m really, really worried about is recruiting more girls. There are four girls on our team and it’s kind of tough getting more girls. We’ll only need about four more and we’ll be good.

Are there other teams that have done this? How did it work out?

Just my opinion, but I think it would be better getting more girls to just join the current team. Unless of course your current team has a huge number of students, and you would benifit from making another team.

There is one, but I can’t remember the number(s). GRR in Rochester, NY formed a “newbie” team and a “veteran” team from one team.

HOWEVER, I am not sure I would split off another at this point. You would need a lot of students, plus double the funding. Having an all-girl team could be an interesting experience, but I wouldn’t do it at the cost of having both teams suffer. How about (if possible) what team 842 did at San Diego last year and send only the girls to one event, and everyone to another?

I think we have a lot, well, we have 17 members. Compared to some teams it’s a little bit of members but sometimes people don’t work because groups may have too many people there. =/

17 girls? or 17 members total?

I don’t think that’s enough to split. Try funneling those who aren’t working into the non-technical fields if they want to go–Chairman’s, Woodie Flowers, animation, cleanup of the shop, homework, and the like.

Of course if your team is uber giant and u just pwn n33bs all over the place it might be good but u have to crawl before u can run a crab drive

17 total members
4 of them girls

We do have different types of groups for people to join.

Montclair High School currently has two teams, a coed team (555) and an all-girls team (1929). It has been my experience that while having a second team may help interest additional girls initially, it is a tremendous undertaking that is in no way easy to do. It is very difficult to divide resources, mentors and advisors, students, and workspaces evenly between two teams. In the end, while much good does indeed come out of having an all-girls team, it also brings a great deal of stress and struggle, both for the students and for the advisors, that makes building both robots, and both teams, very difficult.

That is not at all to say that it can’t or shouldn’t be done. The students on both teams at Montclair High School have done an excellent job in the past, and continue to impress me now. I do believe, though, that however the splitting of the teams is done - whether the teams are completely separated, or work closely together - an element of competitiveness is bound to surface that may make it very difficult for the students to learn from one another as they would on the same team.

Instead of creating a separate FRC team solely for girls, I might suggest that you create an all-girls group to compete in additional competitions (FTC for example). Competitions on the FTC scale can be just as exciting and just as good of a learning experience as FRC, but will allow the entire team to work and learn together to build the robot for the FRC season.

Team 340 split last year to give more robot time to our rookies. We typically had & have somewhere between 35 & 50 students involved. That’s a lot of hands in a small space. We also have sufficient funding such that adding the rookie team saved us money. (Less people travel to Atlanta). This year we have about 40 students and I almost think that our rookie team is too small. Almost.

Team 1155 did the split last year to form the all girls team 2265 at Bronx Science and felt that it was a great decision. I am guessing that Ana Martinez is offering you guys the same deal we got last year (NYC regional paid for?) and if that is the case we can answer a lot of your questions, just PM me and I will try to answer in a timely fashion.

As far as female interest in robotics is concerned we saw a peak. Monetarily both teams have benefited due to the vast amount of money out there for women in engineering and though we had some issues with mentorship, we just got picked up by a group of female engineers from Credit Suisse thanks to Ana and the others in charge of NYC FIRST. All in all we felt that it was a great idea to start 2265 but one must also consider that BX Science is a very different atmosphere than Ghouse and that may play a role.

Hope this helps


if you guys had more members i would say yes split but maybe if you open your team up to any high school student in your area you could get many more students
but just like industrialization you need be really stably lots of mentors good funding (although this can save you money if you do it for like my team) and if you ask rees there’s a lot more un-fun work so it put more stress on your team but the benefit is huge the subteam’s on 340 (the vet’s team) is pack with talent the kids that moved up learned a lot on 424 there are no rookies in to slow you down not that getting slowed down is bad
but as for a female team i don’t see why the world is men and women yes boys can get controlling but what better practices for the girls learn to get heard on 340 and 424 most girls who join end up being able to work right alongside everone in fact for the past 2 years either the vp or president has been a girl
i think if you wan to split go rookies and vet but don’t be afraid to let them mesh from time to time let them work to help each other

ps if you ever split you should remember be one team two (different) robots


Teams 494 and 70 both exist at Goodrich High School. The students have a choice of what team they would like to be on, but for the most part, Team 494 is made up of primarily junior/senior members while team 70 is primarily sophomore/freshmen. Having two teams only works if you make sure everything is fair. It is like having twins, whatever happens to one, the other also must have it.

This set up provides many more opportunities for students to get hands on experience working on the robot. You see, double the robots, double the jobs, but also double the problems. Things go wrong on one that do not go wrong on the other and vice versa. Or one piece of lexan bends in an egg shape instead of a circle and becomes a better hopper for balls.

If you were to do this i would not suggest it if you have only 17 members :o . If you doubled, then you might have enough students to do this. But, if you plan on adopting a two team system you must consider a few facts: 1)How are the students split (And you said girl/boy) 2)Will you collaborate in design (We do, 340/424 don’t) 3)Where will you get funding (We were lucky enough to get support from our three sponsors for team 70 when they were added to our school). Numbers one and two are small but fairly important points, but number three is the most important. Most sponsors won’t just double their funding if you ask. You must pay at least $6000 more for a new team, and if you are already cash strapped this is a major roadblock. Good luck if you intend to start a new team. If you (Or anyone) has any questions, just PM me, and I will be happy to try and answer them for them.

I don’t have a problem with the thread title … two teams, one school … for many of the reasons stated above, if both teams can thrive, then great! g/l to both of ya’

… but personally (and I don’t wanna’ get too political or social or otherwise incorrect), I’ve gotta’ start wondering about why the “all girls” rule for the second team … if veteran teams have a plethora of members and they decide to spawn a rookie team, that’s verrrry different from going all-girl with a team of only 20-something members.

What’s next? A team made up of all [insert politically incorrect race/religion/belief group here] ?

I think that one of the underlying benefits of being in the FIRST Family of participants, is learning how to work/play/learn/grow together in a diverse environment with different sorts of people … if the boys are elbowing the girls out of the “good stuff”, then speak up and let your mentors and team leaders help even out the workload.

If a girl is the best driver on the team, then she should be the driver (our team will be holding Tryouts for the driver positions … the best ones get to drive … it’s not a popularity contest). If she want’s to cut/grind/build then great! But everybody can’t do everything on a team. The team benefits by each and every contribution from its members … and we can’t ALL be the driver ALL the time.

Heck, I’m a mentor and I wanna’ Drive! Maybe I should start an All Mentor team!

As a 15yr “veteran” in the field of Electrical Engineering, I strongly encourage any girls that I meet, with an interest in science or engineering, to follow their dreams in earnest! The Male/Female percentages are very slanted to the M’s nowadays … but it’s 100x more than the last generation … and probably 100x fewer than the next generation. The industry in general will benefit more and more as our diverse gender/race/religion/whatever just blurs into people working together towards a common goal.

For my 2-cents, I’d say keep the FRC team together and work out the issues that make you wanna’ leave. I don’t think 17+4 is a big enough team to split up. And I just personally don’t like to see all-this or all-that sorts of groups in general … but that’s just me … and you asked! :smiley:

Thanks everyone for your input =]

We have taken those questions into account. I don’t really like girls and boys divided so much but in this case I think it’s a good idea. Most girls in G-House don’t want to join. Why? They say girls can’t do those type of things. I try to tell them otherwise though. I’ve been on the team three years now and I love it. I especially love showing people that I can get something done, boys aren’t needed all the time. I think if girls see that we can get things done they will change their minds. They might be more likely to join if there’s an all girls team.

I don’t think a lot of team members are needed on a team. Two years ago we had the least about of members, 10. Yet, we got everything done. We did whatever we had to do because it was the most important thing to us.

Last year, our rookie year, we had A LOT of people on the team, upwords of 30. We found that having lots of people working in the same area actually slowed us down. We ended up scrambling at the end because for 5 weeks too many people were doing…whatever…and it was hard to keep track of what was going on.
This year, we split into a girls and boys team. Guys is 2077 Girls is 1988. There are 14 on the guys team and 4 on the girls. And it seems to be working out really well. We got organized much faster and are running a lot smoother.
One of the advantages of having two teams is being able to build two different robots. We saw this work out extremely well for the Martians 70 and 494, who had great robots. However, if I remember correctly, they built two robots that were almost exactly the same. We plan to have our robots perform different functions. One will be small and fast, so as to run around and score points, and the other to work with the trackball. And it would be awesome for our teams to pick each other if we make a seed.
One more thing: Although we are two teams, we are all from the same school. Therefore, we will help each other out. If one team is having problems and needs help, they don’t ahve to go very far to look for help. We’re really one big happy family (maybe not always happy, since we are going to have sleep deprivation for the next several weeks, but we have to stay positive!)

It’s a shame they’re so reserved about joining a team that is predominantly males =\ i know we have a lot of kids on our team… i can’t spit out an accurate number, but i know it’s more than seventeen, and we only have 5 girls. I sort of get a sense of pride in being able to work with the boys you know? Part of the reason i love first so much is because of all the awesome people you meet, that you may not have spoken to before. You wouldn’t get that with an all girls team, i don’t think. Even if there were enough girls to support a second team… i feel like that many girls would just cause drama o.o; sorry if that’s stereotypical but i’m a girl too so whatever.

Last year was 2077 rookie year with about 23 guys and 4 girls. This year we started an all girl team, too. It has 3 girls and the guy team has 15 guys. So far, everything is working out O.K.

Woodie always says “FIRST is NOT about the ROBOT…”

I agree with previous comments: there is plenty of opportunity in the other areas of the program–Chairman’s, Woodie Flowers, animation, SWAG, Sprit, Imagery and community outreach. Two team schools always seem too focused on just the robot and forget about the core mission of FIRST.

In many ways a second team in one school is a terrible idea. Sponsor funding is limited. When incremental funding is available is it better spent on starting another team in a school that is already served? or a NEW team in a NEW school to introduce NEW students to FIRST and serve more students? To inspire more students to be science and technology leaders, I strongly feel serving more schools is better aligned with the Mission of FIRST.

Besides, are multiple teams allowed in any other competations? Band? Basketball? Football? Cheerleading? Dance Squad, Volleyball? No No No No No No. True, Male and Female leagues are common in sports, but I can see nothing about FIRST that would require parallel leagues.

JV teams are common to keep underclassmen interested in other activites. After a few years, plenty of spare hardware exists in the team to allow for JV builds. These JV builds can provide the hands on time needed to keep everybody interested has they prepare for their own Varisty years.

Finially, my experience leads me to believe that the best FIRST teams generally have a large diverse population with strong mentoring and solid community support. Pool your mentors, pool your community support and WELCOME every member of your student body to your ONE school team.

“FIRST is NOT about the ROBOT…”

trust me 2 team one school has is a very good thing for us is

“Sponsor funding is limited.”:
haveing saved us money as only the vet team go to altanta the rookies can go once there on 340 or if they win FLR

“When incremental funding is available is it better spent on starting another team in a school that is already served?”:
we save money we have worked with our sponsor to start 3 more teams in our in the local area with the money and because there more square feet of robot we have started pulling in kids from other schools wear there not enough interest to start a full sized team.

“Two team schools always seem too focused on just the robot and forget about the core mission of FIRST” :how can you inspired a kid to get in to engineering when they never get to work on the robot because there 29 other kid already work and designing it