This 2020-2021 season, we had two main ways to reach out to other people and spread the word of FIRST. The last year was particularly difficult because of COVID-19, and we faced many challenges regarding how to tell others about FIRST. Our first in-person Outreach was at Maker X in February of 2020. We gained lots of interest at this event, but many of the people who were interested in robotics were too young for First Tech Challenge, so after they drove our robots at our exhibit we directed them to our partnered First Lego League teams, and many members joined those teams after seeing how cool our robots were. Over the summer, our team did not meet in person due to worsening COVID-19 numbers, so we opted to use our sponsor, Slack, to communicate online about various topics, and what to post on our Twitter page. During our season, by word of mouth, a new member named Spencer joined our team, although it is not official yet, he is very interested in joining us for the full 2021-22 season. An interesting fact about Spencer is that he came all the way from Stuttgart, Germany and heard from Logan and Sam that they were on a FIRST team, and he was instantly hooked. A little later in our season, also by word of mouth, we had a new potential member interested in joining, although we have not heard any updates yet about whether or not she will join us next year. Sam’s younger brother, Max, is also interested in joining the team.
During the week of our first qualifying competition, we held a robot demonstration for our families and potential members. Here, we showed them a little bit about what FIRST and Team Calamari are all about, and then demonstrated how our robot worked by running a few practice-rounds. This was a great opportunity to show off our robot and to outreach to students interested in FTC.
We also made our YouTube channel in January, where we already have some videos uploaded one of which has over one hundred and fifty views. We plan on making many more videos about our team, FIRST, and tutorials about certain programs and hardware for other FTC teams to use.