Plus, we recap Kickoff, highlight a FIRST team featured on CNN Heroes, and unveil the FIRST Innovation Challenge presented by Qualcomm.
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Beyond the BotsSM Twitch series returns TODAY

Tune in to the season premiere of Beyond the Bots℠ on FIRSTtv today at 12:00 p.m. ET. FIRST Game Designers will be pulling back the curtain to see a never-before-revealed look at the evolution of Game Design over the last 30+ years. We will also be joined by experts from Disney Imagineering, AutomationDirect, and members from the FIRST® Robotics Competition, FIRST® Tech Challenge, and FIRST® LEGO® League Game Design Teams. At the end of the show, teams will have a chance to submit questions during an "ask me almost anything" session.

Plus, mark your calendars now for the second installment of Beyond the Bots on January 29 at 12:00 p.m. ET as we celebrate National Mentor Appreciation Month with a special episode dedicated to FIRST mentors and coaches. Join us and special guests from Robonauts, Allspark9, mentors from the FIRST community, and more! Teams can also recognize and celebrate their own mentors on social media by using the hashtags #MentoringMonth and #CHAMPIONTHEGAME for a chance to be featured in the upcoming show.

FIRST® Robotics Competition season kicks off

During last week’s global FIRST Robotics Competition Season Kickoff Broadcast, officially sponsored by the United States Air Force, we revealed three new engineering, innovation, and design team-based challenges: INFINITE RECHARGESM at Home, Game Design Challenge, and FIRST® Innovation Challenge Presented by Qualcomm. These remote challenges target a wide range of goals, interests, and skills sets, from engineering design to business development, and allow all team members to build confidence, have fun, and develop important skills.

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FIRST® Innovation Challenge unveiled

The FIRST Innovation Challenge presented by Qualcomm has officially kicked off for FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition teams. Inspired by the season’s sports and fitness theme, we’re challenging teams to explore the invention and innovation process through identifying a problem or opportunity to help people and communities keep, regain, or achieve optimum physical and/or mental health and fitness through active play or other forms of movement.

Teams will design a solution, create a business model and pitch their idea, and advance their skills by using technology as part of the process. Advancing teams will join FIRST LEGO League teams to showcase their innovative solutions at the 2021 FIRST Global Innovation Awards powered by Star Wars: Force for Change, June 28-30, 2021. Teams can still get in the game by registering for the FIRST GAME CHANGERSSM powered by Star Wars: Force for Change season.

Prepare to lead FIRST programs with other parents and educators
Join one of the FIRST Professional Development cohorts in February and build a foundation to deliver FIRST LEGO League or FIRST Tech Challenge and create engaging, positive learning environments for every student. Learn more about upcoming session dates and pricing.

Game-changing FIRST team featured on CNN Heroes
For the first time, Pete Peeks was able to use both hands to hang Christmas lights outside his house this year, thanks to the help of FIRST Robotics Competition Team 8080, Sequoyah Robotics, from Canton, Georgia. Working with E-Nable, a global organization of volunteers that use their 3-D printers to make prosthetic upper limb devices, the 25-member team set out as #FIRSTGAMECHANGERS to improve not only Pete's, but several others' quality of life. "They went beyond expectations in terms of really assessing the situation and learning what my specific needs were," Pete told CNN. Read more on CNN.
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