Problem: How to Recruit Members

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eagerlearner102
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Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby eagerlearner102 » March 6th, 2019, 6:53 pm

I come from a small private school with only 300 students in high school. There are 4 major extracurricular activities offered at our school: DECA, MUN, speech & debate, and robotics. Speech & debate and robotics have the most number of members, with around 50 for robotics and 45-50 for speech and debate. Usually, people have a hard time doing both speech and Science Olympiad or robotics and Science Olympiad at the same time due to other events going around March. Our team is pretty new because we only competed in the 2nd year and we didn't do well (20th out of 36 registered teams). Regionals ended so I am thinking of methods to recruit committed members.
Do you have any advice to form a strong team where most classmates are loyal to other activities? Essentially, how am I going to convince upcoming freshman and sophomores to join Science Olympiad when our robotics and speech and debate team already made it to nationals while we didn't even make it to states? I think one of the main reason no one wants to join us is because they don't think it is worth it because we aren't good enough as a team.
Last but not least, is there any point in a selection/tryout process if we can't even find 15 members?
Thanks for your help guys.
2020 events: Protein Modeling, Ping Pong Parachute, Designer Genes
2019 events: Protein Modeling, Sounds of Music, Fermi Questions
Competition: 2019 Northern California Bay Area Regional
Fermi Questions: 2nd
Sounds of Music: 4th
Protein Modeling: 9th :?

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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby UTF-8 U+6211 U+662F » March 6th, 2019, 6:59 pm

I come from a small private school with only 300 students in high school. There are 4 major extracurricular activities offered at our school: DECA, MUN, speech & debate, and robotics. Speech & debate and robotics have the most number of members, with around 50 for robotics and 45-50 for speech and debate. Usually, people have a hard time doing both speech and Science Olympiad or robotics and Science Olympiad at the same time due to other events going around March. Our team is pretty new because we only competed in the 2nd year and we didn't do well (20th out of 36 registered teams). Regionals ended so I am thinking of methods to recruit committed members.
Do you have any advice to form a strong team where most classmates are loyal to other activities? Essentially, how am I going to convince upcoming freshman and sophomores to join Science Olympiad when our robotics and speech and debate team already made it to nationals while we didn't even make it to states? I think one of the main reason no one wants to join us is because they don't think it is worth it because we aren't good enough as a team.
Last but not least, is there any point in a selection/tryout process if we can't even find 15 members?
Thanks for your help guys.
Can't answer to the rest of the post, but as for tryouts, I wouldn't go through a tryout process necessarily, but I would make plenty of materials available such as practice tests and days where a lab is open for events like Forensics. We don't have 15 members either, but with agreements as to who can do which event, solid planning, and hard work, you can earn medals and even go to states!

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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby eagerlearner102 » March 6th, 2019, 8:48 pm

Thank you.
Are you saying that your team didn't participate in every event but in each event there was intense focus on it?
2020 events: Protein Modeling, Ping Pong Parachute, Designer Genes
2019 events: Protein Modeling, Sounds of Music, Fermi Questions
Competition: 2019 Northern California Bay Area Regional
Fermi Questions: 2nd
Sounds of Music: 4th
Protein Modeling: 9th :?

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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby Unome » March 7th, 2019, 8:12 am

Thank you.
Are you saying that your team didn't participate in every event but in each event there was intense focus on it?
If you're trying to go to state, always participate in as many events as you can.
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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby knightmoves » March 7th, 2019, 10:05 am

Thank you.
Are you saying that your team didn't participate in every event but in each event there was intense focus on it?
If you're trying to go to state, always participate in as many events as you can.
This. What this means is that if you have a small team, you have people doing events single-handed, and you have people doing five events. A scioly team has 47 slots (2 per event except 3 for Experimental Design) but you don't need to fill them all. You have to have 2 people for WIDI, and you want to have 2 people for the balsa event (can be 1 builder plus one body doing bucket stabilization on the day. That can be a random body you draft for the competition - they don't need to study for it.) The other builds can be done with 1 person. Experimental Design really needs at least 2 people to complete in the time available. Two people are helpful for some of the other lab events (eg. Chem Lab and Forensics). On many other events you can get by with one person.

If everyone takes on five events, you can cover all your events with as few as six people. It's a lot of work for those six, and competition days will be crazy, and you have to be first to the self-schedule, because you have zero flexibility.

You might also need to have a spare person run a build or two, rather than your builder. Boomilever can be run by a non-specialist with only a small amount of instruction. With more instruction, Mission Possible and Mousetrap Vehicle could be run by someone else. This isn't ideal, of course, but if you don't have many people, you make do.

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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby knightmoves » March 7th, 2019, 10:17 am

Last but not least, is there any point in a selection/tryout process if we can't even find 15 members?
This is worth more discussion.

It's better to send a bad person on to an event than to not have anyone, but it's better still to work your good people harder. What you do if you're a team of five people faced with a potential new member is different from what you do if you're a team of ten or twelve people. Ten or twelve people are sufficient to cover all the events in reasonable comfort, so your new member either has to be better than someone at something, or fill in some spots where you really just need a pair of hands. If you've just got 5 or 6 people, it's probably worth your while taking anyone with a pulse that isn't actually disruptive.

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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby eagerlearner102 » March 7th, 2019, 2:32 pm

Thanks. Well we have around 10 people assuming that no new members will join because most people do robotics or speech and debate. I guess you are right about bad people because I don't want to be mean to my fellow members but a few people didn't study at all but it was better than getting last place.
2020 events: Protein Modeling, Ping Pong Parachute, Designer Genes
2019 events: Protein Modeling, Sounds of Music, Fermi Questions
Competition: 2019 Northern California Bay Area Regional
Fermi Questions: 2nd
Sounds of Music: 4th
Protein Modeling: 9th :?

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eagerlearner102
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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby eagerlearner102 » March 7th, 2019, 2:33 pm

Thank you.
Are you saying that your team didn't participate in every event but in each event there was intense focus on it?
If you're trying to go to state, always participate in as many events as you can.
I think a realistic goal we have is to do better than this year. We got 20th out of 36th. Based on our placing is it even possible to make it to states? For my regional you need to be 4th place or above to make it.
2020 events: Protein Modeling, Ping Pong Parachute, Designer Genes
2019 events: Protein Modeling, Sounds of Music, Fermi Questions
Competition: 2019 Northern California Bay Area Regional
Fermi Questions: 2nd
Sounds of Music: 4th
Protein Modeling: 9th :?

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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby knightmoves » March 7th, 2019, 4:23 pm

I think a realistic goal we have is to do better than this year. We got 20th out of 36th. Based on our placing is it even possible to make it to states? For my regional you need to be 4th place or above to make it.
Improving from 20th to 4th is quite a step, but not impossible. You won't do it with team members that don't study, though. To make state, you'll need to get single-digit places in basically all your events. Get some top-3 finishes, and you build up a buffer that will let you carry a bombed event or two (something bad will happen...) You can do this with 10 people, if the 10 people want to do it - but you can't want it for them. They have to commit to putting in the work and doing better, and you have to enter all the events and do OK. With a field of 36 teams, racking up 37 points for not competing will kill your overall score rapidly.

It depends what your team wants to do. Do you, as a team, want to go all out and try to make state? Everyone has to put the work in, you need to attend good invitationals, and make sure your hard work is turning in to competitive results (it's easy, for example, for people to spend lots of time working at build events, but be a factor of several away from a competitive score because they don't know what the other teams know.)

You can do it, but everyone has to want it.

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Re: Problem: How to Recruit Members

Postby UTF-8 U+6211 U+662F » March 7th, 2019, 5:05 pm

Thank you.
Are you saying that your team didn't participate in every event but in each event there was intense focus on it?
Definitely participate in as many events as you (collectively as a team) can.


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