It may look like winter outside but students on the Kettle Falls High School robotics team are excited that the build season has officially begun. This is the third year that Kettle Falls High School has been involved in the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) robotics program. Team 4980, the Canine Crusaders, made it as far as the Portland, Oregon regionals in their first year. Their second rookie year saw them compete all the way to the World’s in St. Louis. They have moved out of the rookie category and are now helping Northport High School in their first year as Team 6076, The Mustangs.
FIRST was founded in 1989 by Dean Kamen (inventor of the Segway) and a few colleagues. They wanted to encourage students in becoming science and technology leaders. The success of the program means that scholarships totaling $25 million are now available for FIRST participants.
Saturday was the international kickoff of the build season. Teams around the world watched the live feed that outlined the goals and rules of the 2016 competition. Each team now has six weeks to design and build their robot.
Kettle Falls Coach Naomi Edwards is as excited as the students. “This is the most productive kick off we have had yet! Our students are really taking the engineering challenge seriously and coming up with fantastic ideas.
Both Northport and Kettle Falls High Schools have their first competition at West Valley High School March 3-5 in Spokane Valley and their second competition in Ellensburg March 17-19 at Central Washington University.