Each year, local high school students participate in the international FIRST® Robotics Competition. They are given six weeks to build a robot to complete a series of obstacles and challenges, then they compete against other high school teams. Automation, Inc. supports local teams including Team 3840 from Isanti County, Teens ‘Nto Technology (TNT), has been involved with the FIRST® Robotics Competition since 2010 and is made up of 4-H members. They work with a group of younger students throughout the project to help pass on their knowledge and encourage them to become more involved with STEM Education. Automation, Inc. also supports Team 2508 from Stillwater Area High School who have been involved with FIRST® since 2008.
"The mission of FIRST® is to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders and innovators, by engaging them in exciting Mentor-based programs that build science, engineering, and technology skills, that inspire innovation, and that foster well-rounded life capabilities including self-confidence, communication, and leadership."
Each year, the group is given a new robot to build and challenge to solve. Mentors from the community help the students develop their skills to design and build the robot. Local businesses, like Automation, Inc., donate funds and some materials for the team to utilize. FIRST® also hosts a FIRST® Tech Challenge and a FIRST® LEGO® League for younger students.
A video of Team 3840's 2017 robot in action can be seen below. At Automation, Inc. we wish Team 3840 and Team 2508 the best of luck in the 2018 FIRST® Robotics Competition!