CLEVELAND -The FIRST Robotics Competition kickoff marks the beginning of the season for high school students from across the nation to design and build robots to compete in an annual tournament against a field of competitors.
FIRST, or For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, is an international, mentor-based student program that builds science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM, skills for high school students by combining the excitement of sports with the rigors of science and technology.
Over 100 local students, teachers and volunteers are scheduled to attend Cleveland's kickoff at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 5, at the Cuyahoga Community College Unified Technologies Center, located at 2415 Woodland Ave, in. Cleveland.
NASA, the largest sponsor of the FIRST Robotics Competition, will broadcast the kickoff nationwide on NASA Television from Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester.
During the broadcast, FIRST founder Dean Kamen and the First Robotics Competition designers will reveal the game and announce the rules of the 2013 competition. Each year a different game is featured usually involving a sport court where robots compete against each other to meet an objective, such as putting balls into a basketball hoop.
Engineers and scientists from Glenn's Research Center participate with many FIRST Robotics Competition teams as technical participants and mentors, sharing their expertise on sophisticated hardware and software and experiences to the nation's next generation of technical leaders.
Thousands of excited high school students, mentors, teachers and volunteers across the globe will go into a design and build frenzy, including fund raising, team branding and designing, building and programing robots in six-weeks.
After six weeks, the students will remotely control the robots in competition rounds on the field at the 12th Annual FIRST Buckeye Regional Robotics Competition Friday and Saturday, March 29-30, 2013, at the Wolstein Center in Cleveland, Ohio.
The schools attending the kickoff are:
Amherst Steele High School Amherst, Ohio
Avon High School Avon, Ohio
Avon Lake High School Avon Lake, Ohio
Beachwood High School Beachwood, Ohio
Berea High School Berea, Ohio
Canfield High School Canfield, Ohio
Choffin Career & Technical Center Youngstown, Ohio
Chaney High School Youngstown, Ohio
Cleveland Metropolitan School District Cleveland, Ohio
East Technical High School Cleveland, Ohio
EHOVE Career Center Milan, Ohio
Erie School District Erie, Pa.
Girard High School Girard, Ohio
Hathaway Brown High School Shaker Hts., Ohio
Highland High School Medina, Ohio
Hoover High School North Canton, Ohio
Lorain High School Lorain, Ohio
North Olmsted High School North Olmsted, Ohio
Midpark High School Middleburg Heights, Ohio
Orange Schools Pepper Pike, Ohio
St. Edward High School Lakewood, Ohio
St. Ignatius High School Cleveland, Ohio
Tallmadge High School Tallmadge, Ohio
Youngstown Early College Youngstown, Ohio
This year, 45 regional competitions will take place across the country, along with six international competitions in March and April. The FIRST Championship competition will be held in St. Louis, Mo., April 24-27, 2013
FIRST was founded in 1989 to inspire young people's interest and participation in science and technology. Based in Manchester, FIRST designs accessible, innovative programs that motivate young people to pursue education and career opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math, while building self-confidence, knowledge and life skills.
Reporters wishing to attend the kickoff at the Unified Technologies Center should contact Jeannette Owens to register at (216) 433-2990.
For more information on the Buckeye Regional FIRST Robotics Competition, visit: http://www.oai.org/firstbuckeye/index.html
For additional information about FIRST, visit: http://www.usfirst.org
For the NASA Television downlink, schedule and streaming video information, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv
For more information on NASA and agency programs on the web, visit: http://www.nasa.gov