FAQs



MTRAS Membership

How Can I Help?

MTRAS is an all volunteer effort and as such, we depend on the generosity of our members who devote their time to help forward our mission of advancing interest and education in the field of robotics. First and foremost, we hope each of our members enjoy and share our community. If you regularly attend meetings and would like to participate more, then please consider the following additional ways you can contribute to the group.

  • Show and Tell - Bring your projects, even if they aren't complete, for show and tell during the monthly meetings. Others will likely learn from your work and might also be able to help you with yours.
  • Host a Workshop - Have a talent with a particular subject and would like to share some tips and how-to advice with others? Please CONTACT US with your workshop ideas!
  • Help Out with an Event - Throughout the year our group will participate in area events and presentations. Please see this area for Volunteer Opportunities.

What is required to be a member?

There are only two requirements for being a member of the Middle Tennessee Robotic Arts Society:

  1. Interest - you need to have an interest in robotics. Interest does not equal proficient.
  2. Participation - you should participate in the group. Members do not have to attend the meetings to be members but we certainly encourage your attendance. Many of our members do not live close to our meeting place and choose to interact with others online through one of our social media accounts.

We are a come as you are, no experience necessary group. While our focus is on robotics, we love making all sorts of things and our members have a wide range of experience from none to professional. Our only real requirement is that visitors and members have an interest in robotics, electronics, mechanics, programming, and / or some other maker talent.

Is there a membership fee?

No. There are no fees or dues to be a member as we are all volunteer. When attending the MTRAS meetings you do not have to pay to get into the Science Center as long as you are only attending our meetings and workshops. However, if you do visit the rest of the Center after the meetings, we ask that you pay for admission since they are a great non-profit who are generously donating space for our meetings.

***NOTE: When attending meetings, please sign in and get an arm band from a small table to the left as you enter enter the Science Center. 

Can my child be a member?

Yes! We have several younger Makers as members ranging from 7 up. For younger children (under 14) we ask that you attend with them for safety.

We recommend that anyone with children interested in the subject attend our next meeting to see if we are a good fit for you. All you would need to bring is curiosity.

What are your meetings like? (10am - Noon)

Our monthly meetings follow the format below. On occasion, we will deviate from this format but only if our meetings coincide with another event. In those cases, our meetings may be cancelled or the location altered. We will update our website and social media accounts with upcoming meeting information.

  • Pre-Meeting Networking and Project Setup - The first 15 minutes of our meeting time is for networking and prep time for those who bring show and tell items.
  • Welcome / Announcements - We begin each meeting with announcements of upcoming events, group projects if any and other local related interests. We also invite members to share any other local events that may not have been covered.
  • Show and Tell - Members can use this time to present both completed and in-progress projects to the group. Usually after each presentation there is a short Q & A with the presenter.
  • Workshop Description - If we are conducting an afternoon workshop, we will describe it as a reminder before we break for networking and lunch.
  • Networking - If time remains before we break for lunch, everyone is encouraged to talk to other members about their projects, ask questions or just get to know each other. 

What are your workshops like? (1:30pm - 4:30pm)

Our afternoon workshop time has no set format and can include the following. It is also possible that we will not hold a workshop but this is rare. Please check our website calendar and Meetup page for workshop details.

  • Formal Workshop Training - Some of our members volunteer their time and knowledge to help others by hosting a training workshop. These can be one day events or span multiple workshops and can range in topics.
  • Group Projects - If the group doesn't have a formal workshop scheduled, we will often use the workshop time to work on group projects.
  • Freeform Project Work - If there are no workshops or group projects we may leave the room available for independent work and networking.