Four Programs… One Mission!
To inspire young people to be science and technology leaders!
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is an all-inclusive, character driven, K-12 STEAM education program that uses robot challenges to build science and technology skills and interests in a holistic way that also inspires self-confidence, leadership, and life skills . In Florida, FIRST serves over 10,000 students statewide.
FIRST was founded in 1989 by inventor Dean Kamen to inspire youth interest and participation in science and technology. Based in Manchester, NH, this not-for-profit public organization designs accessible, innovative programs that motivate young people to pursue education and career opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and math, while gaining self-confidence, knowledge, and life skills.
FIRST is committed to fostering, cultivating and preserving a culture of diversity and inclusion. We embrace and encourage differences in race,color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, income or any other characteristics that make our program participants unique.
With support from a comprehensive network of a majority of Fortune 500 corporations, educational and professional institutions, foundations, and individuals, FIRST provides more than $25 million in college scholarships. Programs include FIRST® Robotics Competition for students in Grades 9-12; FIRST® Tech Challenge for Grades 7-12; FIRST® LEGO®League for Grades 4-8; and FIRST® LEGO®League Jr. for Grades K-3.
In April, the four programs culminate in the FIRST Championship, an international robotics competition and celebration where teams win recognition, build on their self-confidence, make new friends, and perhaps discover exciting new career paths.
FIRST at a Glance
FIRST is an international program with growing impact:
- 400,000+ students
- 38,700+ teams
- 34,000+ robots
- 90,000+ Mentors/adult supporter roles filled
- 90,000+ other Volunteer roles filled (e.g. event Volunteers, Affiliate Partners, VISTAs)
- More than 3,500 Sponsors, including corporations, educational and professional institutions, and individuals
Every FIRST program is run by a dedicated and accomplished group of volunteers, including the parents, teachers, friends and engineers, who spend many hours each year to make FIRST a reality for all of the students. Increasingly, these active volunteers and role models are FIRST Alumni.