On Saturday, 9 January, FIRST, a not-for-profit public charity designed to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology, officially announced the rules and game-playing details for its 2016 FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC).
This year’s FRC, titled FIRST STRONGHOLDSM (watch video of game rules!), is expected to involve nearly 80,000 high school students on more than 3,100 participating teams throughout the world. Working with adult mentors, students have six weeks to design, build, program, and test their robots to meet the season’s engineering challenge.
Saturday’s kickoff event, held in Manchester, New Hampshire, was broadcast live to the participating teams at more than 114 venues around the globe. (For a replay of the Kickoff broadcast, click here.) Teams received a Kickoff Kit comprised of donated items and components worth tens of thousands of dollars—but only limited instructions. Once these young inventors develop their robots, their teams will participate in one or more of the regional and district events that measure the robots’ effectiveness and students’ determination and collaborative capabilities. Qualifying FRC teams will compete for top honors at the 2016 FIRST Championship, which will take place 27-30 April in St. Louis, Missouri, USA.
As strategic alliance partners of FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), ISA and its umbrella organization, the Automation Federation, actively support FIRST’s multi-faceted educational programs that help young people discover and develop a passion for STEM learning and career pathways.