FIRST is a international organization that unites high school students such as our team KRUNCH 79 East Lake High School in Florida with Honeywell engineers and adult mentors to build a robot that will compete at regional and national competitions. Internationally, 156,000 students, countless engineers, and many other mentors around the world participate in FIRST. The number of teams has grown from 28 in 1992 to about 1500. Along the way, students learn concepts related to engineering, programming, and advanced computer software such as AutoDesk 3D Studio Max, AutoDesk Inventor, and C compilers. Students get a hands-on perspective of the engineering field and workplace.
FIRST is about more than just robots. At competitions, teams are always willing to help each other by supplying extra parts or by volunteering to help another team. This atmosphere is the result of FIRST’s coined phrase: “Gracious Professionalism.”
The Chairman’s Award is the most prestigious single award at any FIRST competition This award solely based on communication, organization, and creating inspiration in other people’s lives. The Chairman’s Award, is given to teams who effectively spread the FIRST message and inspire youth to become more interested in science and technology. Winners of this award are inducted into the FIRST Hall of Fame. Team KRUNCH is one of the only teams to receive 6 awards and in 2008 it received it’s second Governor’s award.
At the beginning of January, the teams view a live telecast presented by the FIRST founders, which explain this year’s challenge. The teams are given a kit of parts and have roughly six weeks to design and build a very competitive robot. At the end of the six weeks, the robot must be shipped to the team’s first regional competition.
The competitions are very exciting, but you find a level of cooperation which is not present at typical sporting events. Teams are friendly, helpful, and encouraging to all of their opponents. The robots play in randomly selected alliances and must be ready to be united with any team.
Teams that win a regional competition or the Chairman’s Award go on to the national competition held in April in Atlanta GA
Electronic Supply Chain Solutions continues it’s sponsorship of Team KRUNCH 79 in 2008 along with many Honeywell engineers and mentors. Read this EE Times Article to learn more
Visit http://escs9120.com/roboticsframe.htm to see ESCS Sponsorship of Robotics
For more info about FIRST, go to: http://www.usfirst.org/who/default.aspx?id=34