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Seeking Engineering Mentor to join growing FTC program at our Chicago school

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  • Seeking Engineering Mentor to join growing FTC program at our Chicago school

    Hello,
    Our school's FTC Program has exploded in student interest since we were able to have one of our two teams be part of a Winning Alliance at the IL State Tournament and move on to the World Championships last year. Unfortunately, we did not plan for such interest with enough engineering mentors and coaches. Does anyone know of ways to recruit interested folks with engineering experience in the Chicago area? We have reached out to local colleges and universities. Our school has funding available to make this a stipend position comparable to athletic programs. The information about the posted position can be found here: https://fwparker.myschoolapp.com/ftp...ad_3131470.pdf
    Thanks for any help you can provide,
    George

  • #2
    Here in the Portland Oregon area we tap mentors and coaches from our parents as a first resource, but also reach out to the corporations in the area. Several of these also match hours donated to the club with a cash donation. I would try contacting nearby companies and see if they have someone in charge of organizing volunteer opportunities. Many of our companies have this position and they can help you find coaches, etc. And as a bonus your team is building future contacts outside the school framework.

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    • #3
      At risk of the obvious, have you sent the request to the parents of your members? The next place I would try is can you send a request to all students of the school? (Our schools have weekly call outs and/or emails to parents.) I would NOT limit myself to those in the vocation as you may find someone who might become invaluable but not an engineer.

      Also:
      https://www.meetup.com/topics/robotics/us/il/chicago/

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      • #4
        Originally posted by ftcsachse0 View Post
        At risk of the obvious, have you sent the request to the parents of your members? The next place I would try is can you send a request to all students of the school? (Our schools have weekly call outs and/or emails to parents.) I would NOT limit myself to those in the vocation as you may find someone who might become invaluable but not an engineer.

        Also:
        https://www.meetup.com/topics/robotics/us/il/chicago/
        this, all day long.
        Out of all of our mentors, and we have several good ones, only ONE is technically an engineer. But you can find people that want to learn enough to be good guides for the kids. The kids will learn what they need, if just told where to look.
        We literally have a requirement that for a student to participate, a parent OR *somebody*, whether an uncle, grandmother, or family friend, must as well. They have to do... something. This creates an internal network. Then, when you need a specific skillset, you pu ta call out acros this network, "Hey, anybody know a mech E who can coem in and teach CAD 3 nights?" Turns out somebody will know a guy....

        By the way - Argonne National Labs isn't too far away. There's some brilliant scientists and engineers there, and it's common for those government folks to want to pay back time. Also the Army Research Lab recently opened a campus there among Argonne, I know for a fact the Director is a STEM supporter.
        Last edited by RatLabGuy; 09-11-2019, 10:54 PM.

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