FIRST® RISE℠ Powered by Star Wars: Force for Change to Inspire Youth Robotics Teams Across the Galaxy

Global K-12 STEM Education Nonprofit FIRST Kicks Off 2019-2020
Youth Robotics Season in 113 Countries; Team Registration Now Open

MANCHESTER, N.H.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–lt;a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/FIRSTINSPIRES?src=hash” target=”_blank”gt;#FIRSTINSPIRESlt;/agt;–FIRST®(For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), an
international K-12 nonprofit organization, announced that registration
is now open for its 2019-2020 youth robotics season, FIRST®
RISESM, powered by Star Wars: Force for Change
. FIRST
estimates that more than 615,000 students from at least 113 countries
will participate this season.

FIRST is teaming up with Lucasfilm
and parent company Disney as part of the Star
Wars: Force for Change
philanthropic initiative to inspire the
next generation of heroes and innovators, creating a place where
collaboration and collective wisdom can elevate new ideas and foster
growth. FIRST RISE empowers FIRST participants to explore
the future of cities and architecture, building communities filled with
inspiration, creativity, and – most importantly – hope. The
cross-program theme was revealed to the FIRST community last
month at FIRST Championship in a video
narrated by Star Wars actor Mark Hamill
.

“We’re thrilled that this season, FIRST participants will be
inspired by the Star Wars galaxy and their own cities, towns, and
communities to embrace problem solving, creativity, and innovation,”
said Donald E. Bossi, president of FIRST. “With the support of
our community of mentors, coaches, event volunteers, sponsors, alumni,
and supporters, our youth robotics teams are building a better future
for themselves and others.”

Founded in 1989 by prolific inventor Dean
Kamen
to create the world’s landmark robotics competition for high
school students, FIRST has expanded over three decades to offer
an international progression of hands-on, team-based robotics challenges
FIRST®
LEGO® League Jr
. (Grades K-4), FIRST®
LEGO® League
(Grades 4-8), FIRST®
Tech Challenge
(Grades 7-12), and FIRST®
Robotics Competition
(Grades 9-12) – that engage kids early in STEM
and inspire a lifelong love of learning and innovation.

FIRST Tech Challenge sponsors include Season Presenting Sponsor
Qualcomm, Official Program Sponsor Collins Aerospace, and IoT, CAD and
Collaboration Sponsor PTC.

LEGO Education is a founding partner of FIRST LEGO League Jr. and FIRST
LEGO League, working closely together with the LEGO Foundation to
support both programs globally. This season, FIRST LEGO League is
delivered through the support of global sponsors LEGO Education, 3M,
National Instruments, Rockwell Automation, and John Deere.

Team registration for FIRST programs is
now open
. Details of each program’s challenge will be revealed later
this year.

  • Beginning in August, FIRST LEGO League Jr. will
    present an exciting new challenge to ignite creativity in young
    children. For the 2019-2020 FIRST LEGO League Jr. BOOMTOWN BUILDSM
    Challenge, teams of 6-10 year-olds will use their imaginations and an
    architecture-themed Inspire Set to explore a scientific concept, then
    build a model and code it to make it move using LEGO® Education WeDo
    2.0. They will also illustrate their research through a Show Me
    Poster.
  • The 2019-2020 FIRST LEGO League CITY SHAPERSM
    Challenge, kicking off in August, tasks students with completing a
    city-themed challenge designed in partnership with architects and
    engineers. An international program for students 9-14 years old (9-16
    years old outside North America), FIRST LEGO League gives
    students the chance to develop, design, build, and code LEGO®
    Education SPIKETM Prime and LEGO MINDSTORMS® EV3
    robots to perform autonomous “missions” on a themed playing field and
    design innovative solutions to a real-world problem inspired by the
    theme.
  • FIRST Tech Challenge teams will be inspired to
    push forward and up into the skies when they compete in SKYSTONESM,
    presented by Qualcomm. Starting in September, FIRST Tech
    Challenge teams of up to 15 students, ages 12-18, explore the
    possibilities of STEM through designing, building, programming, and
    operating robots to play a competition challenge in an alliance
    format. Team members also earn awards based on their teamwork,
    engineering design and process, and connection to their local and
    engineering community.
  • FIRST Robotics Competition teams will work toward
    building a new metropolis, harnessing renewable sources of energy to
    power the grid, generate new growth, and keep our community engaged,
    with INFINITE RECHARGESM. Working with adult mentors, FIRST
    Robotics Competition participants have limited time and resources
    to design, build, program, and test their robots to meet the season’s
    engineering challenge, which will be unveiled in January. Teams
    compete at events that reward design excellence, competitive play,
    sportsmanship, and high-impact partnerships between schools,
    businesses, and communities.

Throughout their experience, FIRST teams follow a signature set
of FIRST
Core Values
, which emphasize friendly sportsmanship, respect for the
contributions of others, teamwork, learning, and community involvement.

For more information about FIRST RISE, powered by Star Wars:
Force for Change
, visit firstinspires.org/first-rise-2020.

About FIRST®

Accomplished inventor Dean
Kamen
founded FIRST®
(For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to
inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people. Based
in Manchester, N.H., FIRST designs accessible, innovative
programs to build self-confidence, knowledge, and life skills while
motivating young people to pursue opportunities in science, technology,
and engineering. With support from over 200 of the Fortune 500 companies
and more than $80 million in college scholarships, the not-for-profit
organization hosts the FIRST®
Robotics Competition
for students in Grades 9-12; FIRST®
Tech Challenge
for Grades 7-12; FIRST®
LEGO® League
for Grades 4-8; and FIRST®
LEGO® League Jr.
for Grades K-4. Gracious
Professionalism
® is a way of doing things that
encourages high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and
respects individuals and the community. To learn more about FIRST,
go to www.firstinspires.org.

About Star Wars: Force for Change

Star Wars: Force for Change aims to create transformation and
change in the lives of kids by helping to bridge the STEM skills gap,
utilizing the fun and intrigue of Star Wars storytelling to
inspire innovation, help build confidence and ignite curiosity. In doing
so, Star Wars: Force for Change hopes to embolden and motivate
the next generation of heroes and innovators, while also empowering the Star
Wars
fan community to use their fandom for good. To learn more,
visit https://www.starwars.com/force-for-change.

© & ™ 2019 Lucasfilm Ltd.

Contacts

Brooke Blew, FIRST ®
603-206-2048
[email protected]

Haley Dunn, FIRST®
603-206-2494
[email protected]

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