Combining the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and technology. We call FIRST Robotics Competition the ultimate Sport for the Mind. High-school student participants call it “the hardest fun you’ll ever have.” Under strict rules, limited resources, and an intense six-week time limit, teams of students are challenged to raise funds, design a team "brand," hone teamwork skills, and build and program industrial-size robots to play a difficult field game against like-minded competitors. It’s as close to real-world engineering as a student can get. Volunteer professional mentors lend their time and talents to guide each team. Each season ends with an exciting FIRST Championship.
FIRST STEAMWORKS, the 2017 FIRST Robotics Competition game, invites two adventure clubs from an era in which technology relied on steam power to prepare their airships for the ultimate long distance race.
Accomplished inventor Dean Kamen founded FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people. Based in Manchester, N.H., FIRST designs accessible, innovative programs to build self‐confidence, knowledge, and life skills while motivating young people to pursue opportunities in science, technology, and engineering.
Team T-Rx 145 has been part of FIRST since 1997. The Rx comes from our founding sponsor Proctor & Gamble Pharmaceuticals as a play on the prescription symbol. The team includes students from four school districts, Norwich, Sherburne-Earlville, Unadilla Valley, and Gilbertsville-Mount Upton. Over the 19 years that our team has been in existence we have seen over one hundred unique students come through the program. Our team is student focused. We have students coming up with the designs and doing the majority of the work. Our mentors take a step back and operate in advisory roles instead of doing all of the work while the students watch.
When we’re describing FIRST to people that have never heard of it before and to new team members, we always tell them that it is the hardest fun you will ever have. FIRST requires a lot of time and dedication. It’s great training for the “real world” due to the extreme time constraints and problem solving. FIRST teams are comprised of people from all different backgrounds and interests. Our mentors come straight from their jobs to work with the team. Since our team is comprised of four different school districts, students have the opportunity to make friends with other students that they normally wouldn’t meet. FIRST is a great cooperative experience. It is the ultimate group project! The dynamics of the group just have to be seen to believe!
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