What is FIRST® Tech Challenge?
• It’s way more than building robots. FIRST Tech Challenge teams (10+ members, grades 7-12) are challenged to design, build, program, and operate robots to play a floor game in an alliance format.
• Participants call it “the hardest fun you’ll ever have!” Guided by adult coaches and mentors, students develop STEM skills and practice engineering principles (like keeping an engineering notebook), while realizing the value of hard work, innovation, and sharing ideas.
• The robot kit is reusable from year-to-year and can be programmed using a variety of languages. Teams also must raise funds, design and market their team brand, and do community outreach for which they can win awards.
• Participants have access to tens of millions of dollars in college scholarships.
• Each season concludes with regional Championship Tournaments and an exciting, international FIRST Championship.
What does every FIRST Tech Challenge team need?
When does FIRST Tech Challenge happen?
- The FIRST Tech Challenge season starts in May, when teams generally form and registration opens. The season kicks off in September 2018 when the season's game is announced.
- The design and build season runs from September to January.
- The state of Georgia divides its teams into leagues. Eagle Robotics participates in the Etowah League.
- League meets occur October through January.
- An Inter-League Tournament is played in January, where teams battle in an effort to earn advancement to the Georgia State Championship. That tournament will be played on the campus of Mount Paran Christian School.
- The Georgia State Championship is played in February, where qualified teams battle in an effort to earn a spot at FIRST Championships.
- FIRST Championships occur at the end of April in Houston, Texas, and Detroit, Michigan. Georgia teams advance to Houston.
What is the time commitment?
- During the school year, Mentors and Coaches meet with Eagle Robotics on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m., and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays.
- All skill levels are welcomed and needed, technical and non-technical. Teams need all kinds of skills to succeed, so what are you good at? Chances are we have a job for you. And we’ll probably teach you a few new ones while you’re with us.
- Student and adult team members are encouraged to bring any skills they already have, like programming, electronics, metalworking, graphic design, web creation, public speaking, videography, and many more. FIRST Tech Challenge welcomes every student, with or without specialized skills.
What is the impact on the students?
The majority of FIRST Tech Challenge participants participate in key STEM activities on the team and experience gains in a number of outcomes, such as*:
What does it cost to participate?
- Each team member is charged $150 for a player pack. This includes an engineering notebook and competition jersey.
- The operational budget of the team annually exceeds $10,000. The generous underwriting of individuals, partners in education, sponsors, and STEM grants make up the balance. Please note the acknowledgement of these sponsors at the foot of this page.
- See the Eagle Robotics Business Plan here for details.