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VRC Girl Powered Essay Challenge Sponsored by The REC Foundation

Girl Powered is an initiative to redefine the face of STEM by creating a more inclusive environment for all students within the robotics community. Together, with the support of the entire community, we strive to encourage equal participation of young women and men in competitive robotics. We want to use this challenge to show the robotics community at large just what it means to be a Girl Powered VRC team!

Do you have a compelling and engaging story about how your team has incorporated Girl Powered into your program? Or do you have a story to share that illustrates how diversity of perspective changes your robot design, your team chemistry, and even your ability to succeed?

This challenge is about sharing your robotics experience as a team that embraces the Girl Powered initiative and what being Girl Powered means to you and your team. Your story must contain a clear beginning, middle and end.

Think of this as a pictorial essay: Your submission should be created using a combination of imagery (photography, drawings, screen captures, etc.) and supporting text.

5 key things to keep in mind for a successful submission:

  • When you hear the phrase, Girl Powered, what comes to mind? How is it reflected in your team’s approach to robotics?
  • Share how your team has taken initiative to create a more inclusive environment that attracts a diverse group of students.
  • Share how each team member has tried various roles on the team (everything from designing, building, programming, strategy, awards, etc.). Explain what you learned through this experience.
  • How do you believe diversity of perspective changes your robot design, your team chemistry, and even your ability to succeed?
  • Who is your STEM role model and why? Does this person inspire you to have a more inclusive team/program? How?

We want compelling, engaging stories that give us insight into how you’ve taken the Girl Powered initiative and incorporated it into your experience on a VEX Robotics Competition team. The benefit of having a diverse team will become apparent through your individual stories.

*Your entry may be shared to help promote the Girl Powered Initiative.

Entries

 

Changing up gender norms in STEM

4478T-Robotics

We are team 4478T from Masuk High School and we are proud to be girl powered! We hope to include everyone, listen to different perspectives, and create a safe environment. This is our story of how girl powered has “changed up” our experience, and has improved our team. We have reached out to our local community to apply these principles and promote STEM through various programs and activities. Together we can be part of something much greater than us, giving everyone an equal opportunity!

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Girl Power: We Construct Our Future Together

slee22

Title: We Construct Our Future Together 

Team Number: 39S

Names: Su Kyung Lee and Minseo Lee 

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Being Girl Powered

awar514

This essay is about my journey in VEX Robotics. I have always been the only girl on my VEX team and this is my story!

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Girl Powered - Building bridges between gender...

lacuevarobotics

At La Cueva Robotics, Girl Powered is very valuable to us. We stand for empowering women and building bridges between the gender gap of girls and boys in the STEM field. We think it's important to have equal participation of girls and boys and we strive to encourage inclusion in our robotics community. This is the story of Team 55885X and how we embrace the Girl Powered initiative!

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Genuinely Feminine

Rachelo

Hiding femininity sometimes becomes a part of the robotics experience for girls interested in stem. I'd like to challenge that to truly encourage girls in the future to try stem and find what they love. Mascara doesn't blind us to math and science, and being feminine isn't a setback to reaching for the stars!

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"Changing Up" the Game (55885Y)

lacuevarobotics

Team 55885Y is a predominantly female team at La Cueva High School striving to close the gender gap in STEM fields.

word count: 675

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We are Girl Powered

SuzanneReed3323a

3323A Miss Einstein is an all-girl VEX EDR Robotics Team from CA.  Team members Elena Carli and Olivia Reed are in 6th grade.  

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Girl Powered: Time to Change Up

niveditathi5572

Team Number: 2360A

Title of Submission: Girl Powered: Time to Change Up

We want inclusivity and empowerment for everyone, especially young people who deserve better for their education
 

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Constructing Our Creative Robotics Community

harithalakshmanan

The document containing our essay has been attached to this submission. In our submission, we have outlined the principles of our club and our club dynamics. We hope that our essay will be good to read. We have attached a copy of the document below.

Essay:

Our team is built on the foundations of diversity and inclusivity, fostering an encouraging environment for people, regardless of who they are or their level of robotics knowledge, to come together and learn and have fun. We’re a group of people passionate about changing the world through technology, working...


 

Inclusivity

shriyaravipati

Shriya Ravipati

Team 92620D

Inclusivity

As a kid, I remember watching rocket launches on T.V. I was fascinated by the clouds of dust blowing out beneath the rocket and seeing it fly away into space. I always wondered what it would be like to see Earth as a tiny sphere and be surrounded by stars. That was the beginning of my curiosity in STEM. 

The phrase “girl powered” to me means including not just women, but everyone and using the power you have to make a difference. It can be in robotics and technology, or it can be to help...


 

Women in STEAM and how we Implement it in our...

smwolff12

We are three girls on a high school robotics competition team, one of which is completely new to engineering as well as two who have grown and experienced the impacts of engineering and women in STEAM. We hope to inspire other girls to be comfortable with the program and feel included and welcome so that they can use their great minds to the fullest. 

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8838A-Discovery 2020-2021

Robohawks- Coach Lund

8838A Robohawks - VRC Middle School

This pictorial essay explains the importance of equal rights between all genders. It includes our opinion on what it means to be girl powered and the power of diversity, as well as our inspiring STEM role models.

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Decabots Girl Powered Essay

deniz.uzun

As a girl-powered team, this challenge exhilarated us because we are aware of women's capability and the world’s capability of empowering male-domination. We are in the 21st century and there are still so many people who say women can’t be scientists, engineers, researchers, and more. We want to change this dirty mindset by showing the world how women are so capable of working in STEM fields. We don’t want to hear more of “women are not suitable for these jobs”. We will prove that women can achieve in these fields by showing perseverance obstinately. In...


 

2021 Girl Powered Essay

binhn2021

Hello, this is an essay that team members Binh Nguyen and Kaida Sayachack Yuom created! We are part of team 4073G and excited for you to read this essay.

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Why Diversity and Girl Power is Important to Me

mbus514

This essay is about my experiences dealing with Girl Power and diversity throughout my years in VEX. 

Title: Why Diversity and Girl Power is Important to Me

Written by Madeline Bush

Team: 4216B

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Break The Stereotype, Be a Role Model

newsome

Break the Stereotype, Be a Role Model

Team 45133B

Sara Newsome, Abigail Koogler, Jacob Smith

An inside look into what it is to be a Girl Powered team in a male-dominated industry, this essay details how every team can take steps towards diversifying their programs and encouraging all youth to participate.

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What Makes Us Girl-Powered

ykim22

The essay "What Makes Us Girl-Powered" was written by the girls in the Roslyn Robotics Club, Team 11577R.

It reflects our goal to make STEM an inclusive and welcoming field to those interested.

 

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Inclusivity in Competitive Robotics

matthewgimbel526

Entrant: Matthew Gimbel

Team: 44833B

Title: Inclusivity in Competitive Robotics

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Changing Up the Field of STEM

7701E-Echo

Changing Up the field of STEM

Team: 7701E

7701E's entry for the Girl Power Essay

Word Count: 1204

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We Should Mind

kristy.l

Entrant Names: Kristy Lau and Callista Tan

Team: 82855X

Title: We Should Mind

Word Count: 1348

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Visioning Empowerment as Xenas

AsiMJ

Entrants: Saanvi Agarwal, Ashita Singh, Charmaine Lui

Team number: 97101W

Title of submission: Visioning Empowerment as Xenas

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Central Robotics Girl Powered

npnguyen

We may not be a full girls team, but this is a perspective of what it is like to be the only girl on a full boy team that is able to put in as much equal contributions as them.

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Girl Powered: A Door to Endless Opportunities

thatnovallynstars

This essay is by all the members of Space Cookies team 1868N. It tells the story of one girl's experience in robotics and her path to finding her girl power. The main character is a composite created from the personal stories of all the team members, with each contributing different parts from their own personal experiences in STEM and their discovery of what it means to be girl powered.

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11124X Girl Powered: Changing Up STEM

jaymiereynolds

We, 11124X, have been a girl powered team since the 2019-2020 season. We have had numerous challenges thrown at us from time to time, but we have always found a way to solve them. Throughout our essay, we touch on some of our many experiences and different things that have shaped our team to who we are today.

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Girl Powered: Changing it Up

VanAnhN

The "Change Up" season holds true to its name-- this year is filled with changes! Follow the story of 2496J as our team continues our journey in robotics and "changes" the outlook of female participation "up"!  

Names: VanAnh Nguyen, Safora Zia, Lucy Xu, Jeffrey Han, Ethan Yee, Jeff Le, Gerald Lu, Sasan Liaw 

Team Number: 2496J

Title of Submission: “Girl Powered: Changing it Up” 

Word Count: 1009

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Girl Powered is for all of us

2250C

Girl Powered is for all of us. Girl Powered for Yarianis is to be in the right place, enjoy what she likes most, and share with others. Girl Powered for her teammates: Kevin, Diego, Sebastián, and Yandré, is to share their place with her.

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What it Really Means to be Girl Powered

SarahHong

Including girls is simple enough, but how do we get our girls to lead and take charge? Here at Red River Robotics, we explored the nature of that very question and worked towards creating an environment that allows girls to take full advantage of their unique potential.

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751A- The Journey to Gender Diversity

751Abvhs

Team 751A

Isabel Caballero- Club President & 751A Team Captain

Over the past several years, I have seen a club that once had only one female become a club full of both genders. In facing the stigma of women in STEM first hand, I understood that it would take strong dedication to push past the isolation and harassment I faced as the only female in the club to become President of the club. Now in becoming Club President I have created a more diverse and inclusive space where no one feels less than due to their gender. 

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Girl Powered: Inspiring the Next Generation of...

jill1605

Team 7983Y believes in the importance of inspiring young women to pursue a career in engineering.  The team has contributed to a club called the Society of Women Engineers and has taken initiative when it comes to teaching everyone about the importance of diversity within the STEM field.

Team Number: 7983Y

Entrants: Jillian Perez, Daniel Oslund, Georgia Tabar, Isabella Quintana, Topanga Carroll, Wyatt Greene

Title of Submission: Girl Powered: Inspiring the Next Generation of Female...