Robotics also has helped the RoboDoves spread their wings in other areas of their lives. At a recent team meeting, the girls spoke of how the team has helped them confront personal and academic challenges and helped reshape their career goals.
Former team members have received full scholarships to college, including two to the Johns Hopkins University.
Matthew decided after joining the team to study bio-medical engineering instead of medicine in college, and received a full scholarship to participate in the Summer Engineering Innovation course at Hopkins last summer. She hopes to attend Harrisburg University of Science and Technology or the University of Maryland, College Park.
Standout student athlete Keimmie Booth wanted to see if she could make a name for herself and her hometown in a different arena.
"Saying you're an athlete from Baltimore, people love you for that," said Booth, a junior who also plays soccer and basketball. "If you said you're a robotics team from Baltimore, they didn't get that. They saw us as city kids who couldn't do anything. But now we're like the Lakers of robotics."
Indya Dodson, a junior, learned that her aspirations to become an aerospace engineer could be more than just a dream after joining the team. She teared up as she spoke of her increasing self-confidence.
"I've done things I never thought I could do," Dodson said. "I'm a person who struggles with things and wants to quit."
"But, if I can build a robot," she added, her voice cracking, "well, you know…"