Adult Mentors and Volunteers
A Mentor Lead is a mentor board appointed adult who is willing to take a leadership or co-leadership role of a sub-team or committee.
Mentors work with students at OHS on a regular basis (4-5x/month). They are (18 years or older and at least one full year post high school). They exude the willingness to offer knowledge/guidance in any area and assist student members in getting the most from their experience in TORC. Mentors can have a variety of knowledge driven talents, not necessarily in engineering.
Volunteers work occasionally with students by assisting the team with various tasks. A volunteer can be a student (under 18 years) or an adult (18 years or older). A volunteer is also one who offers knowledge/guidance in any area and who assists student members in getting the most from their experience in T.O.R.C.. Volunteers are always welcome. They can aid in areas of engineering, graphic design, arts, construction, labor, travel, food, or organizing events.
Registering to become a Mentor or Volunteer
- Must complete the T.O.R.C. mentor forms and register with FIRST®. These forms/links can be found at www.team2137.com.
- Must read Youth Protection Program (YPP) document on the FIRSTC website and participate in the FIRST® Youth Protection Program (YPP) training provided by FIRST®.
- The Oxford Community Schools Background Check Form must be completed and turned into the team communications Lead Mentor or the school district directly at least one week prior to the January FIRST® game release date for the season in which they will mentor.
Mentors are encouraged to also read the FIRST® Mentoring Guide available at www.firstinspires.org.
Volunteer (Adults only)
- Must register and complete the T.O.R.C. volunteer forms found at www.team2137.com.
- The Oxford Community Schools Background Check Form must be completed and turned into the team communications Lead Mentor or the school district directly at least one week prior to volunteering.
In addition, volunteers are encouraged to read the Youth Protection Program (YPP) document on the FIRST® website, (www.firstinspires.org). Note that some volunteer roles with FIRST® directly will require this training.
Expectations of Adult Mentors and Volunteers
- Inspire students in science and technology
- Motivate and engage students in meaningful activities in the designing, building, marketing, and operating of the robot.
- Create an atmosphere of open communication where students feel free to think independently, voice their opinions, and take risks as long as they do not impose a safety hazard.
- Be active listeners. Make sure that everyone understands what is being said or what is being decided.
- Make sure that students are completing tasks on time. This includes providing a timeline for activities and trusting students to complete tasks while holding them accountable for their assignments.
- Create an atmosphere of trust and respect. Mentors are expected to show trust and respect to every student while fostering the same trust and respect in themselves.
- Make sure that a safe environment is maintained and safety procedures are being followed. If there is an unsafe condition, mentors must step in and restore safety to the situation.
- Be positive examples to the students. This includes refraining from the use of profane or offensive language, avoiding inappropriate conversation/jokes/innuendo, as well as following safety procedures such as wearing safety glasses and using power equipment properly.
- Maintain a positive attitude and an optimistic outlook at all times.
- Facilitate instruction and have students do as much of the work as possible. Mentors are to teach, coach, and observe students while remaining ready to help.
- Only step in to perform the work if it is beyond the capabilities of the students. However, students should be there to observe and learn if possible. Mentors can also be used as extra help if the project is behind schedule.
- Remain alert to vulnerable situations. Mentors are not to transport students in their own vehicles without written parental permission. They are not to be alone with only one student in a vehicle or in a hotel room during team travel.
- Don’t manipulate or attempt to sway students to support a personal preference, but, rather provide the group as a whole with pertinent data.
- Put the team’s goals over personal goals. Once a team decision is made, support it whole heartedly, even if personal preferences are unused.
- Adherence to the FIRST® Youth Protection Program guidelines
Failure to follow the listed expectations can result in removal from the team.