Foundations for building a FIRST Team
There are many factors that should be considered when preparing to build a FIRST Robotics team. Enlisting members who possess expertise and passion will undoubtedly contribute to the team. Successful FIRST teams are built on principles that create opportunities for all kids from all backgrounds. This Foundations document has been created to assist mentors and coaches in their efforts to create desirable FIRST teams that value diversity, equity and inclusivity.
FIRST Robotics Canada is working hard to implement a number of initiatives that will include traditionally overlooked and underserved groups in FIRST programs and on FIRST teams. FIRST Canada is striving to create a more inclusive and welcoming place that will further our goal of fully reflecting the communities we serve.
FRC teams can support our initiatives on equity, diversity and inclusivity (EDI) by making efforts to recruit and include diversity on teams.
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Inclusivity, Diversity, Equity – Teams are encouraged to recruit kids from all backgrounds, capabilities and social circumstances. Consider opportunities for all kids, all learners.
Indigenous Peoples includes Inuit, Métis, and First Nations. Teams are encouraged to work hard to increase the number of indigenous youth involved in our programs.
Females are vastly underrepresented in STEM fields. Engaging and empowering young women in all of our programs like FRC is a high priority
Underserved communities are designated by inherent attributes such as gender, age, race, and ethnicity. The term “underserved” is also based on a set of circumstances which may cause certain demographic groups to experience greater challenges that result in vulnerable populations. Vulnerable populations include the economically disadvantaged, racial and ethnic minorities, people with chronic health conditions, and low-income families.
Be inclusive of all subject areas: Arts, Math, Sciences, Leadership, Business etc. as the best FRC teams are comprised of schoolwide populations
Varied School Staff such as secretaries, guidance councilors, teachers from all departments
It is helpful to have at least 2-3 Adults to take on key roles on the team: Team Administrator, Lead Coach 1, Lead Coach 2. Teachers and parents can fill these roles.
Parents can play important roles on the team: they bring expertise, provide after hour food and schedules, supervision, and can become a team “runner” to secure items needed by the teams Partnerships with local businesses, industries, include more than technology industries: business, banking, imaging companies.
Sponsorships may be of a financial nature, and they may be about expertise. It’s important to note that some companies may not sponsor you financially, but their expertise can be of significant benefit to your team.