FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is a not-for-profit STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) engagement program dedicated to inspiring young people to become leaders and pursue STEM careers. A major focus of the organization is the FIRST Robotics Competition where students compete in sportsmanship of the mind to create a robot in six weeks that will accomplish the competition goals.
However, the most prestigious award a team can win is called the Chairman’s Award. This award honors the team that best represents a model for other teams to emulate and best embodies the purpose and goals of FIRST Robotics. The Chairman’s award is designed to recognize team’s that spread their passion about science and technology into their community and schools. A team that achieves this highly desired and rare award must embody the FIRST value of gracious professionalism by demonstrating continued efforts to develop and support other FIRST robotics teams by encouraging high-quality work, emphasizing the value of others and showing respect toward all individuals and the community.
A Chairman’s Award team must also exemplify the FIRST value of coopertition, meaning “unqualified kindness and respect in the face of fierce competition.” Teams must present their efforts to a panel of judges, including a 10,000-word essay, three-minute video presentation, and a five-minute formal presentation to a panel of judges followed by a five-minute question and answer session.
This year’s 2016 Dallas Chairman’s Award Winner is FRC Team 1296, the Rockwall High School Full Metal Jackets. See their award-winning video submission:
As a Regional Chairman’s Award wining team, RHS Robotics will receive a reserved spot at the FIRST Robotics Championship Competition, held in St. Louis April 27-30, where they will compete for the Championship Chairman’s Award and the FIRST Hall of Fame.
Rockwall Heath Robotics, FRC Team 3310, set a new district record by winning two FIRST Regional Robotics events in the same season. The team won the Rock City Regional Robotics Competition in Little Rock, Arkansas, and the Hub City Regional Robotics Competition in Lubbock, Texas. As a winner of regional competitions, the team has qualified for the sixth year in a row to compete in the FIRST Robotics Championships in St. Louis, Missouri.