Robots are the way of the future, but for FIRST Robotics Canada it's the people building them who are the real stars.
The Ontario-based organization hosts a series of multi-day competitions that combine the action of professional sports with robotics. There are over 15000 students from Kindergarten to grade 12 competing in FIRST programs across Canada. Youth, teachers and mentors form teams and build a robot in only six weeks using teamwork and ingenuity in the face of tight deadlines and limited resources. Students receive hands-on engineering experience from mentors from major technology companies while developing robots for the competition. The top contenders in the regional robotics competitions win a chance to attend the FIRST World Championship for top bragging rights.
Funding from NSERC’s PromoScience is helping FIRST programming reach more students by expanding to Alberta with the launch of a robotics lab in Calgary.
The FIRST Robotics Competition is inspiring more young scientists and engineers to pursue their interests after high school. Studies measuring the impact of the FIRST Robotics Competition have found that youth participating in the program are twice as likely to major in science and engineering, bringing FIRST closer to achieving its goal to create a culture where science and technology are celebrated.
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