[YMTC]: Summer Robot Camp

As a newish mentor, I’d like to know what people are doing over the summer in the way of robot skill-building training, especially for those teams that do not do robotics as a regular school-day class.

At our school, many of the robot students are also in band and other extra-curricular organizations that directly conflict with FRC events, training, etc.

And some pointers on selling our program, adding legitimacy, gaining equal status so as to fit with the other school site “stakeholders.”

Odd topic for the YMTC forum. But welcome, anyway,

On the topic, we don’t really do much over the summer, but really swing into gear as the school year starts. We meet about 6 times, and each subteam has a ‘project’ they work on, all very similar to the tasks they will need to do during Build season. For example, electrical wires up a complete electrical board, from battery to motors. Programming programs it. Drivetrain builds you guessed it) a drivetrain.

To save money, most things are recycled from older robots, but there are some costs involved.

Mentors help cover the basics, but much of the training is done by Juniors and Seniors, for the benefit of Sophomores and Freshmen.

As for legitimacy: We are a TEAM, not a club. We have standards - miss too many meetings and it is “a problem”. If your Band director or Football coach (or whoever) would not accept that level of atendance, neither will we. Band and sports are legitimate because they demand a commitment. So do we. One can easily support “legitimate” that way.

Conversely, not having standards and accountability eliminates legitimacy.

We meet to get ready for IRI practice and a few demos like the Taste of Chicago, 4th of July parades and this year the off season Rockford event. At this time of the year we are preparing to get started as school starts since our program is a class within the school district. Monday was our first class period where students are welcomed back, we start our first fundraiser (Entertainment Books), freshmen are signed up for TIMS and the WildStang website and meet some of the mentors.