A high school student by day and a power-tool-toting Maker by night, Lynn Urbina is a member of the Girls of Steel – an all-girl competitive robotics team located in Pittsburg, PA that’s on a mission to draw young women into engineering.
Next week the Girls of Steel will compete in a robot frisbee match in the FIRST regionals in Pittsburg. Each year FIRST competitors face a different challenge: last year it was basketball. Short for “For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology,” FIRST was founded in 1989 to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology. And these girls are clearly inspired: despite having only arrived on the competition scene in 2010, they have already made it to the FIRST World Championships twice, have won a pile of awards (including the Rookie All-Star and the Engineering Inspiration Award) and are hoping to make it to the finals again this year.
Lynn shares her experience with the FIRST competition, the Girls of Steel team, what it was like to build their 2012 robot (affectionately called “Watson”) in a series of drawings she made …
(You can also download the full comic as a PDF here.)
(The real Watson)
(The Girls of Steel)
Competition: FIRST, founded 1989
Team: 3504 The Girls of Steel, Pittsburgh, PA, founded 2010
Mentorship: Carnegie Mellon University Robotics Institute