Dean Kamen Joined by National Luminaries to Kick off FRC 2012 Season!

Who:        FIRST ® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) will be joined by public figures to launch the 2012 season of the FIRST®Robotics Competition (FRC®) with a worldwide Kickoff event originating from Manchester, N.H.

  • The 2012 season will include an estimated 2,355 teams (nearly 60,000 high-school students) participating in 68 Regional and District events. All teams will be shown the 2012 robotics game field and challenge for the first time and will receive an exciting, new Kit of Parts made up of motors, batteries, a control system, and a mix of automation components – but no instructions. Teams will have six weeks to design and build robots to meet this year’s engineering challenge.

Dignitaries and public figures from across the nation will deliver remarks on video and in person, including (in order of appearance):

  • Stephen Colbert, The Colbert Report
  • Jon Dudas, FIRST President
  • Former President, George W. Bush
  • Walt Havenstein, FIRST Chairman
  • Chairman’s Award video by FIRST Team 359, Hawaii
  • Former President, Bill Clinton
  • Dr. Woodie Flowers, FIRST National Advisor
  • Scholarship video by Jean Zheng, Stephen Hall, Yale University
  • Muhtar Kent, Chairman and CEO, The Coca-Cola Company
  • Dean Kamen, FIRST Founder & President of DEKA Research & Development Corp.
  • Kate Pilotte, Collin Fultz, FIRST Kit of Parts Engineers
  • Aneesh Chopra, White House CTO
  • Alex Kipman, General Manager, Hardware Incubation, Xbox, Microsoft Corp.
  • Charlie Bolden, NASA Administrator
  • Jim Heppelmann, CEO, PTC
  • FRC Game Design Committee Introductions
  • Bill Miller, Director, FIRST Robotics Competition
  • Team Safety Animation winner, FIRST Team 3705 Arrowbots
  • Dr. Aidan Browne, Chief Referee, FRC
  •, Grammy-award winning artist/producer and Director of Creative Innovation, Intel
  • and other Special Guests 

 What:       Accomplished inventor Dean Kamen founded FIRST in 1989 to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people. The FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) is an annual competition that challenges high-school students – working alongside professional Mentors – to design and build a robot of their own, and compete in a ‘ Sport for the Mind™’ that measures the effectiveness of each robot, the power of teamwork and collaboration, and Gracious Professionalism™. Students build and program their own robots against a field of competitors and experience the excitement of science, engineering, technology and innovation.

 When:      Saturday, January 7, 2012 – 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Broadcast

 Where:    Southern New Hampshire University, 2500 North River Road, Manchester, N.H. and across the nation!              

  • Remote FIRST teams will tune in via NASA-TV broadcast and Web cast from 74 Kickoffs. Access the NASA webcast via link from News & Headlines section. To locate teams in your area, visit and click on the “What FIRST Teams & Events Are In My Area” block in the top right corner. For a listing of local Kickoff locations, visit
  • In Florida, kick off events are being held in Coconut Creek, Melbourne and Orlando!
Check back early next week for photos and game news!
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