FIRST® stands for For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, it was created by Dean Kamen and Woodie Flowers. FIRST® was created to encourage students down the path of engineering and technology. Four different competitions were created.The largest competition is FIRST® Robotics Competition, it was designed for high school students. In this competition, students work as a team to create a robot that will be put to the test in many competitions throughout the US. Another competition they have for High School students, would be the FIRST® Tech Challenge. This competition was designed to be a more accessible and affordable option for schools and for those who have an intermediate skill level. FIRST® Tech Challenge robots are approximately one-third the scale of their FIRST ® Robotics Competition counterparts. The FIRST ® Tech Challenge competition is meant to provide a transition for students from the FIRST ® Lego League competition to the FIRST ® Robotics Competition competition.
The next competition is FIRST® Lego League, a course designed for those between the ages of 9 -14. This course is manly in found in middle schools and elementary schools throughout the world. The combination of interchangeable LEGO parts, computer ‘bricks’, sensors, and software, provide preteens and teenagers with the capability to build simple models of real-life robotic systems. Students from FIRST ® Robotics Competition come to mentor those in this course especially our team! FIRST ® Lego League Jr. is a variation of FIRST ® Lego League that is designed for the youngest students in elementary school, ages tend to vary for 5-8. In FIRST ® Lego League Jr. the student will build models of a robot that would be used for that year’s FIRST ® Lego League challenge.
Every one of these competitions competes at the FIRST® Championships. The FIRST® Championship is the annual event which celebrates the finale of all of their programs by bringing them all together for their final rounds in the same event. The FIRST® Championship is scheduled to be in St. Louis, Missouri and in Houston, Texas this next year.