Over the weekend, 30,000 participants, fans, families, educators and industry leaders celebrated students’ engineering and robotics prowess at the annual FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Championship, held in St. Louis, Mo., at the Edward Jones Dome.
The event brought 12,000 students from 32 countries along with their robots to compete in the International Robotics Championship, April 25-28.
Three teams from Stuart, Fla., Mountain Home, Ark., and North Brunswick, N.J. won the final showdown, earning the FIRST Robotics Competition Championship Winning Alliance. Several other U.S. and international FIRST student robotics teams earned honors for design excellence, competitive play, research, business plans, website design, teamwork, and partnerships.
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A not-for-profit organization founded in 1989 by inventor Dean Kamen, FIRST strives to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology.
This year, will.i.am, pop superstar, was on hand to kick off the week-long event, meet teams, and take part in a ceremony and a new innovation competition, “Wouldn’t It Be Cool If” sponsored by Time Warner Cable, a FIRST strategic sponsor.
Major awards were presented by senior officials from the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Department of Energy, NASA, as well as executives from Autodesk, Boeing, General Motors, PTC, Microsoft, Google, Rockwell Automation, and UL, among others, according to FIRST.
Photo courtesy: FIRST