In 1989, “STEM” wasn’t even a term. The World Wide Web was just invented. Robotics wasn’t an afterschool activity, let alone a sport for the mind. But that year, inventor Dean Kamen had his greatest game-changing idea: FIRST®. On March 20, 1989, Dean set in motion a movement to transform our culture to one where science and technology are celebrated, and young people dream of becoming leaders in those fields as much as they do of becoming athletes and entertainers.
We’ve come a long way in 32 years: Our inclusive global robotics community includes 110+ countries. STEM education is top of mind for educators, industry leaders and policy makers. Diverse innovators are more widely celebrated. And FIRST students and alumni are solving incredible challenges in their schools, workplaces and communities – including, this past year, in the fight against COVID-19.
We’re forever grateful to our tireless mentors, coaches, volunteers, alumni, sponsors, fundraisers and donors who support our mission wholeheartedly and have transformed the lives of a generation of young people. Let’s keep working together to make FIRST available to every kid, everywhere.
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