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Learning Unboxed Ep. 10: Metro Early College High School’s “Metrobots” robotics team

One of the things that we love here at the PAST Foundation is having the opportunity to watch incredible young adults learn and grow; these amazing students are rock stars in our eyes, and giving them a space to stretch their wings is one of the most rewarding experiences we have.

And today, we want to introduce you to three of the rockstars that lead the Metrobots, Metro Early College High School’s (MECHS) FRC robotics team. Metrobots and several other robotics teams are housed at the PAST Innovation Lab, one of several co-created learning labs hosted at PAST.

We want to introduce you all to: Fatima Bainazar, a senior from Metro Early College and the project manager for the Metrobots; Melissa Olvera, a senior at Metro and the Administrative Project Manager for the Metrobots; and Elizabeth Drake, a junior at Metro who is interested in mechanical integration and engineering.

Collectively, these three ladies represent students from a variety of backgrounds, experiences, opportunities, and passions – just like Metro Early College.

We unbox:

  1. Why these girls chose to go to an “alternative” school, as opposed to a “traditional” public school

  2. How the learning environment at Metro is inclusive to kids from all backgrounds and experiences (not just kids who want to take all of the advanced classes and get early college credit)

  3. How we can create a real-world context around learning, why it matters, and how it can be done in existing educational environments

  4. Metrobots isn’t just an opportunity for students to learn – it is also an opportunity for them to lead

  5. The simple ways that teachers and after-school programs give students much-needed support, when they may not get it anywhere else

  6. Why students need a safe space to make mistakes



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