Founded in 1989 in Manchester, New Hampshire by Dean Kamen, FIRST is a non-profit organization dedicated to hosting the Jr. FLL, FLL, FTC and FRC robotics leagues as well as instilling a fascination and appreciation for science and technology.

FIRST is an acronym that stands for For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology...

However, To many it is more than an acronym.

FIRST becomes a way of life. All of the skills, experiences and memories that you gain while being in any FIRST team, from Jr. FLL to FRC will be beneficial throughout your entire life. FIRST not only provides life-lasting memories, experiences, and skills; it also encourages members of robotics teams everywhere to share them with other teams, help get more teams started, and encourage the prospects of Science and Technology to others (e.g. an FRC team starting a FLL team for elementary school-age kids.)

A TED talk by Ron Visser, leader of the first European FRC team discussing the prospect of Science and Technology

Core Values

Gracious Professionalism

Woodie Flowers, inventor of the term explains it in this video

Gracious Professionalism is one of the core values at FIRST. It's all about encouraging innovation and competition. It encourages teams to fiercely compete against one another in a friendly manner; At the end of the day no one is a loser; no one is put down -- everyone's accomplishments are equally recognized and celebrated.


Coopertition (a cross between the words Cooperation and Competition) is another core value at FIRST. It encourages teams to collaborate between each other despite the fact that they are competing between each other. It means that if a team at the pit needs something as small as an allen wrench or as large as a laptop, and you have one, you let them borrow it.