With over 5,000 teams competing in the FIRST Robotics Competition this year alone, it is evident that many people internationally are choosing to invest in FIRST.
Why are so many students participating in FIRST? First of all, the FIRST program has a large impact on students when it comes to learning life skills. FIRST promotes the idea of Gracious Professionalism, which supports the competitive nature of the competitions while emphasizing team sportsmanship. FIRST also teaches students the skills of teamwork, time management, self-confidence, and communication. In addition, FIRST lays the foundation for students to pursue careers in science and technology, giving students valuable hands-on experience even before graduating high school.
A study from Brandeis University revealed that students involved with the FIRST program had significantly more success later in life than non-FIRST students. For instance, FIRST students are…
- More than 3 times as likely to major specifically in engineering.
- Roughly 10 times as likely to have had an apprenticeship, internship, or co-op job in their freshman year.
- Significantly more likely to expect to achieve a post graduate degree.
- More than twice as likely to expect to pursue a career in science and technology.
- Nearly 4 times as likely to expect to pursue a career specifically in engineering.
- More than twice as likely to volunteer in their communities.
Click here to see stories from former FIRST members about how the program affected and continues to affect their lives today.