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Who are We?

Team STEAM Robotics is an all-area high school robotics team based in Lawrence, Kansas. We are a group of driven high school students interested in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math – hence the name Team STEAM! We participate in FIRST® Robotics Competition and assist with FIRST® LEGO® League and VEX Robotics. While working on the team, members gain practical engineering, design, and programming skills as well as develop important traits such as cooperation and leadership. 

Along with attending local FRC competitions, we host summer camps for middle schoolers, an FLL scrimmage, and a FIRST® LEGO® League tournament. We have also done several workshops with the Lawrence Public Library and local middle schools, as well as travelling for sponsorship presentations on a frequent basis. You may also know us as the hosts of the Kansas Cup!

Our team has been around for 9 years, and has won the following:

  • Team Spirit Award (2019)
  • Innovation in Control Award sponsored by Rockwell Automation (2018)
  • Entrepreneurship Award sponsored by Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers (2017)
  • Highest Rookie Seed Award (2014)

Through real-world work experience, we aim to assist students and mentors of all FIRST®teams in growing science and technology through promoting skills in business, engineering, computer science, design, and management.


Jeannie Merritt

Jeannie is our head coach. She is a reading specialist at Lawrence High School who became a team mentor two years ago. She is in charge of keeping everyone organized and enthusiastic.

Tom Walton

Tom has mentored various FIRST® teams, including FLL and FRC, for six years. He currently works as the Director of Engineering at WellSky, and has a passion for robotics and FIRST®. He also coaches our VEX teams, and has led them to State and National Championships.

Grace McMonagle

Grace is a marketing mentor and a Graduate Student in Computer Science at the University of Kansas. She has been a FIRST® participant for eight years, making her our go-to for all things FIRST®related. She also coaches and organized the FIRST® LEGO® League teams.


It would be far too much work if everyone had to learn how to do everything that our team does, so we’ve divided into five subteams, each that takes on an important role within team steam robotics.

Marketing – The marketing subteam is responsible for team fundraising, seeing that all marketing materials are up-to-date and available. The Marketing Subteam also oversees community outreach, contacting businesses and finding the sponsors that keep our team running. 

Creative – The creative subteam is responsible for the production of all web, print, and digital marketing material, managing content strategy for all projects, and enforcing brand guidelines across the entire team. 

Design – The design subteam, our first technical subteam, is responsible for providing a functional, strategic, and manufacturable design to the mechanical and control systems subteams. They use CAD, a rendering software, to design our robot for competitions. 

Mechanical – The mechanical subteam is responsible for building the robot from the ground up, manufacturing, assembling, and wiring the plans provided by the design team. As a member of this team, you would learn how to use power tools, 

Control Systems – The control systems subteam is responsible for writing all of the code for our robots, bringing our projects to life. We program in Java, as well as fine tuning the robots movement, and enabling out robot to execute complex objectives.