The competition is called "For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology," or FIRST. It is organized to inspire curiosity and create interest in science and mathematics among today's high school students. The competition is a unique varsity sport of the mind designed to help discover the interesting and rewarding life of engineers and researchers.
The local competition will include participation from more than 60 high schools teams from Virginia, Maryland, Washington and several other states. Forty-five regional competitions also will take place around the country. Championship competitions will occur in Atlanta in April. NASA is the largest sponsor of the national FIRST program, including support for five regional competition events and more than 280 teams.
The program was founded in 1989 by accomplished inventor Dean Kamen to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people, their schools and their communities. Based in Manchester, New Hampshire, FIRST is a non-profit organization that designs accessible, innovative programs to build self-confidence, knowledge and life skills while motivating young people to pursue academic opportunities.
For more information about the local competition and a listing of competing teams, visit: