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FIRST Things First

FIRST logo

FIRST is For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology. From the FIRST website, the vision and mission are:

"To transform our culture by creating a world where science and technology are celebrated and where young people dream of becoming science and technology leaders."
~ Dean Kamen, Founder
"Our mission is to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders, by engaging them in exciting mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology skills, that inspire innovation, and that foster well-rounded life capabilities including self-confidence, communication, and leadership."

To accomplish this, FIRST has created four levels of programs for students aged 6-18. Teams have adult coaches and mentors to guide them as they use science, technology, and teamwork to tackle real-world challenges.

Teams are often times affiliated with a particular school, but could also be a scout troop, a church youth group, or some other co-operative. In our case, it's a 4-H club. Team 3674 is under the umbrella of The Clark County 4-H Robotics Club.

FIRST provides an awesome chance for teens to be connected to supporting industries and the potential for scholarships as they move into adulthood. There are FIRST scholarships offered by more than 130 colleges, universities, and companies, totaling nearly $14 million.

Perhaps someday it will be as common for a high school to have a FIRST robotics team as it is to have a football team. We look forward to that day.