The FIRST Robotics Competition: Deep Space

The FIRST Robotics Competition is an exciting, world-wide competition that challenges teams, professionals, and young people to solve an engineering design problem in an intense and competitive way that is unlike any other, with a new challenge every year. The program is a life-changing, career-molding experience, and a lot of fun. In 2015, the 24th year of competition, there were 2,904 teams with roughly 73,000 students and 17,500 mentors from 19 countries that built robots. The competitions are high-tech, spectator sporting events and are the result of brainstorming, real-world teamwork, dedicated mentoring, project timelines, and deadlines. Colleges, universities, corporations, businesses, and individuals provide scholarships to its participants. Involved engineers rediscover many of the reasons they chose engineering as a profession, and the companies they work for contribute to the community, while they prepare and create their future workforce. The competition shows students that the technological fields hold many opportunities, and that the basic concepts of science, math, engineering, and invention are exciting and interesting.

“The varsity sport for the mind”

Palmetto '15 (473)

For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology – FIRST

FIRST  was founded in 1989 by Dean Kamen and Woodie Flowers to inspire young people to become science and technology leaders. FIRST allows students to discover the excitement and rewards of science and technology, while building self-confidence and learning life skills such as communication, team building, and leadership. Kamen has stated that FIRST is the invention he feels most proud of, and predicts that participants will be responsible for significant technological advances in years to come. This real world experience combines the excitement of a sporting event with science and technology to create a varsity sport for the mind. FIRST  is based in Manchester, New Hampshire and is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit charity.

“To transform our culture by creating a world where science and technology are celebrated and where young people dream of becoming science and technology heroes”

– Dean Kamen, FIRST Founder

FIRST Progression of Programs

FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC©) High School Age Students (Grades 9-12)

FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC©) – Middle & High School Age Students (Grades 7-12)

FIRST LEGO League (FLL©) – Ages 9-14 (Grades 4-8)

Junior FIRST LEGO League (Jr. FLL™) – Ages 6-9 (Grades K-3)