F1 in Schools: All girls team Incendo blaze a trail in STEM

What is Team Incendo? And what are your team’s ambitions?

We are team Incendo, a team consisting of six passionate secondary 2 girls from Raffles girls school, participating in the F1 in Schools competition. F1 in schools is a multi-disciplinary STEM competition where students design and manufacture a miniature compressed air powered car from scratch out of the official F1 Model Block using CAD/CAM software. Teams are required to collaborate, design, analyse, manufacture, test and race their cars.

Team Incendo’s ambition for this competition is to not only achieve top 3 in the national competition but to also advocate for our cause, women in STEM.

We believe that with our innovative and persevering attitude, our team will be able to succeed in the competitions and blaze the trail.

Who are the amazing members of Team Incendo? 

  • I am Kah Shuen the team leader, and I help to oversee the development of our team in both the enterprise and engineering aspects.
  • I am Rachel the marketing lead, and I help to secure sponsorships so that we can obtain the resources and services needed for manufacturing and marketing aspects.
  • I am Phoebe the graphic designer, and I work closely with Rachel to produce content for Social media and I also help design our team’s portfolio and logo.
  • I am Clara the design engineer, I am Tracy also the design engineer and together we work on designing the car body which fits all the strict competition guidelines but also moves fast.
  • I am Nicole the manufacturing engineer, and I help to mill, assemble and paint the car to turn our designed car into a reality.

What is the objective of F1 in Schools and why did you decide to form a team? 

The objective of F1 in schools is to give students the opportunity to develop skills in technical and financial strategy areas. We decided to participate in F1 in schools as we were very interested and passionate about STEM.

F1 in schools gave us an opportunity to try something new and feel like a real team working in the industry, designing something from scratch and reaching out to potential sponsors.

In the marketing aspects, we have sourced for sponsors and managed to secure a few. We have created our website and have been working on producing content for our Instagram page which now has over 1000 followers. In the engineering aspects, we have completed the draft design of the car and have been researching on how to improve it and the best materials to use when manufacturing the car.


What have you been doing to keep busy and the team alive during Covid-19?

With the COVID19 situation, our team has continued working hard on our marketing and engineering aspects. Firstly, we have been reaching out to our partners and following up with them. Secondly, we have been refining our car design and updating our aerofoil designs. Thirdly, we have been researching the best materials for manufacturing the car. Lastly, we have posted content and designed bingos on our Instagram page in order to update others.

Through this circuit breaker, our team will continue working on our designs and finding new partners. We also aim to complete our engineering and marketing portfolios for the competition.

Can you tell us what the plan is from here?

Given the COVID19 situation, the competition has been postponed to an indefinite date. However, our school has decided to hold our own internal F1 in schools competition, where we would race against our schoolmates and be judged on our portfolios, just like how it would have been in the actual competition! Thus, we do sincerely hope that some of you out there, individuals or companies, will still consider partnering and supporting us.

What have been the most striking lessons you’ve learnt as a team so far?

The most striking lessons we have learnt as a team is adaptability, perseverance and communication.

Firstly, due to the COVID19 situation, our team had to learn to adapt to the situation from having online meetings with sponsors instead of in person, to taking the initiative to complete work at home.

Secondly, our team learnt to persevere through tough times. Whether it be finding it stressful to come up with the best design for the car or after sending countless emails being unable to find sponsors, our team has learnt to never give up. We continued to research and work hard in order to do everything with excellence.

Lastly, learning the importance of communication in a team. We learnt to communicate and work well with one another, updating each other on progress regularly and actively sharing our views and thoughts.

How has the program helped shape your awareness of business and engineering and the importance of teamwork?

Firstly, in terms of business, our team has learnt that sourcing for sponsors is no easy feat. We had to send countless emails in order to find a few potential sponsors. We also learnt that having a good “selling point” and the cause is important to help attract sponsors that share a similar cause.

Secondly, in terms of engineering, we learnt the time and effort it takes to research and design the best car. We realised how much detail and planning goes into a single design of a car.

We have learnt how important it is to be able to work well in a team, to communicate with one another and to ensure that there is a fair distribution of workload in order for the team to progress quickly.

What are you going to take away most from this year and how will it influence your interest in STEM in the future?

We hope to learn more about how STEM affects our daily life. Thanks to F1iS, we’ve learnt that STEM can and is very much connected to many other aspects such as business and entertainment which has influenced our interest in STEM. The competition has also empowered us further in our cause for women in STEM.

Although women have grown to be equally as recognised as men in this field, we hope to inspire girls in our age group to chase their interests and dreams, as well as play a part in encouraging gender equality in workspaces, for both men and women.

By empowering ourselves through this competition, we will be able to have confidence in the future. Furthermore, we have also grown our interest in designing and engineering. The COVID-19 situation has taught us to adapt to the given environment and equipped us with many skills and values. We have become more flexible and have adapted to  online communication such as video calls and stayed positive!

Your team logo is based on a Phoenix. In the spirit of a Phoenix, how will you rise again once the circuit breaker is over?

We learnt recently that a Phoenix symbolizes transformation, death and rebirth. Just like a Phoenix, we hope to be able to grab the opportunities and transform into a more versatile team. This can be made more easily once the circuit breaker is over as we will be able to resume our F1 training sessions. During these sessions, we are able to receive feedback from our experienced teachers and instructors and further improve ourselves,

keeping our motto, “Blaze the Trail”, in mind. We hope to be able to step out of our comfort zones even more once the circuit breaker is over and push our own limits.

How can our Girls in Tech partners and members help support Team Incendo? 

We reached out to Girls in Tech because we believed that our values were similar, which was empowering women and girls alike in STEM. As an all-girls team participating in such a STEM competition, we believe that girls are as equally capable as men if they are enabled and equipped with the appropriate environment.

As this competition requires teams to source for their own funds to manufacture, run and promote their cars, we will be extremely grateful for both monetary as well as in-kind services in the relevant areas. Not only that, but we would also be very grateful for any mentorship relevant to F1iS offered, such as in engineering, manufacturing and marketing aspects, as it will help guide us through this journey.

As advice from our seniors on technical aspects is limited and we are Year 2s, hence Physics concepts such as Bernoulli’s principle are quite new to us. It is a lot of experimentation on our part, testing the designs over and over in the software, familiarising ourselves with the controls.

We would be grateful for monetory and in-kind support from anyone looking to empower girls in STEM. Also, mentors who can help provide us with a guidance that allows us to further improve our car design, would be greatly appreciated.

We are very honoured and grateful for Girls In Tech Singapore for lending us their expertise and introducing their wide network to us! In case you’d like to speak with us or share your support in anyway, please contact us by email at [email protected]

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