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For Parents

Robotics Summary

The Chicago Style Botdogs, FRC Team 4645, known as robotics, is part of Lane Technical High School's many highly competitive academic clubs/extracurriculars. The Chicago Style Botdogs is registered as a team in the First Robotics Competition (FRC), an internationally recognized engineering competition in which teams must work together to construct an industrial-grade robot in a short span of time. In the Chicago Style Botdogs, members have the rare opportunity to experience hands-on work in engineering, programming, electronics, and social outreach--skills essential to students interested in engineering during and beyond high school. Our team highlights contain but are not exclusive to: 

  • 100 and counting diverse members

  • 2 separate invitations to FRC's international competition, the highest and most prestigious level of FRC Competition

  • 5 separate Spirt Awards, an award that commemorates a team's teamwork and partnership during the FRC season. 

  • Many members of the Chicago Style Botdogs have received opportunities to attend some of the United States's top colleges, such as Harvard, Stanford, and the University of Illinois: Urbana-Champaign.

Team Organization

Our team consists of a primarily student-led leadership structure; our team structure consists of subteam leads, a project manager, team captains, and coaches; coaches being the only non-students. Any student is eligible for any position, excluding coaches, given experience, and team consensus. 

  

The Chicago Style Botdogs takes place in 3 unique seasons: Pre-Season, Build Season, and Competition Season.

In our pre-season, members work on side projects, such as building test robots and practice electronic sets, to prepare for the Build Season. In addition to side projects, members are taught by our subteam leads on the subjects of Mechanical and Design, Softronics and Electronics, Strategy and Scouting, and Media and Marketing. 

Our build season allows team members to hone in and use their previous or acquired skills over the pre-season. During the first week of January to March, team members work together in a vigorous competition to build a competitive, industrial-grade robot in only 8 weeks: an incredibly short time frame.

After our build season, members are invited to watch and cheer on our competition robot compete in tournaments throughout Illinois and Wisconsin. FRC competitions allow members to marvel at their work and competitions allow members to connect with other aspiring engineers, creating everlasting friendships inside and outside our team. In some cases, our team has the rare opportunity to compete in the FRC International Competition, an opportunity that we have participated in thrice. 

Student Responsibilities

Every year, each member of the Chicago Style Botdogs must sign a responsibility contract and safety sheet, regardless of their position on the team. During the entire year, students are always within close vicinity of power tools, active robots, and saws. It is expected of the student to treat every tool and machine as safely as possible.

If a student violates any guideline in the responsibility contract or safety sheet, or if the student and parent do not sign the safety contract and safety sheet, then the student cannot participate in the current FRC season.

Students must pay a $65 membership fee to the "Lane Tech Computer Science Booster Club" through the Lane Tech Computer Science Department website or in person through our head coach, Mr. Berg.

 

If a student does not pay the membership fee, they cannot participate that year in the Chicago Style Botdogs. However, exceptions can be made for those who cannot pay the membership fee. If you have any questions regarding the membership fee, contact our head coach at rberg@cps.edu

Frequently Asked Q&A

What does a FRC Competition look like?

  • FRC Competitions have the same level of intensity as a sports match; however, there is a significantly higher amount of cooperation between the teams, making the event a friendly, extremely competitive event.
     

What effort is expected out of a member of the Chicago Style Botdogs?

  • There are not necessarily preferences on the amount of effort a team member puts into robotics, but we expect all members to try their hardest for every day they attend.  

What skills are required for robotics?

  • No prior skills are necessary: all members of varying skill groups are accepted! 

What is the average workload of a member of the Chicago Style Botdogs?

  • The workload of a member is dependent on the dedication of the member. Any robotics member can attend a meeting from one day to five days a week, depending on how much effort a member gives to the team.

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