Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob

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Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob
Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob
Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob
Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob
Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob
Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob
Youth Robotics Programs in DC, MD, VA - FIRST Rob

Project Report | May 4, 2021
2020-21 Season Accomplishments

By Katarina Spears | Development Director

Alumni Ambassador Grants Awarded to 16 Teams
Alumni Ambassador Grants Awarded to 16 Teams

The 2020-21 season was a year like no other, but thanks to our corporate and community partners, FIRST Chesapeake was able to bring high quality STEM education leadership programs to 7,000+ middle and high school students in hundreds of school districts and communities throughout the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia. Through the commitment, talent and enthusiasm of FIRST Chesapeake volunteers and the 2021 Alumni Ambassador Cohort Sponsored by Booz Allen Hamilton, FIRST Chesapeake was able to offer 11 hybrid/remote FTC qualifier competition events (the only FIRST District Partner in the country to do so). FIRST Chesapeake provided competition opportunities for 130+ FTC teams spanning the District while keeping teams, volunteers, corporate partners, and alumni engaged through virtual programming such as the FIRST Chesapeake Chats Sponsored by Newport News Shipbuilding and the Reaching for the Stars: Women in STEM Program Sponsored by Leidos. Unfortunately, due to the impact of school closures and social distancing requirements, the FIRST Robotics Competition season was canceled for 2021, however, the majority of teams continued to meet remotely and build their skills in preparation for the 2021-22 academic year.

FIRST Chesapeake continued its partnership with NextUp RVA for the 2020-21 academic year. For the past six years, FIRST Chesapeake has provided equipment and mentoring for FTC programs in five middle schools in Richmond, VA. FIRST Chesapeake continued this commitment to serve Title I middle schools with after-school programming through virtual platforms using at-home robotics kits funded through a pilot program sponsored by Qualcomm. This pilot program also helped to bring at-home robotics virtual learning to students in three high schools in Washington, DC with funding provided by Qualcomm and Booz Allen Hamilton. Building on the success of this pilot program during the 2020-21 season, FIRST Chesapeake will be able to expand quality STEM programming to students learning in a virtual environment, especially those with limited financial means or with challenges to transportation or other access-limiting factors.

The 2020-21 season was also a banner year to celebrate women in STEM. Reaching for the Stars: FIRST Chesapeake Celebrates Women in STEM Sponsored by Leidos is an essential program, demonstrating to the thousands of young women involved in FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition teams in the District that they are seen, they are valued, and the FIRST Chesapeake community is committed to providing visible role models, Scholarships Sponsored by Dominion Energy, and encouragement as they enter STEM fields of study and careers.

Despite the remote nature of events and competitions this year, 260 FIRST Chesapeake volunteers donated more than 3,000 hours of volunteer service this year. And that doesn't include the volunteer hours donated by team mentors representing 440+ teams! Our teams and students benefit greatly from the dedication, hard work and expertise of the committed volunteer service at all levels of operations.

Alumni Ambassador volunteer efforts supported all areas of FTC competitions: judging (remote), media production assistance (on-site and remote), audience queuing (remote), judge queuing (remote), and live commentating (remote). As presenters and moderators during FIRST Chesapeake Chats, Alumni Ambassadors offered advice on making presentations or video editing and production, interviewed experts in STEM fields to provide live programs about career opportunities, and even presented on their own areas of expertise in graduate school and the workplace. Together, the Alumni Ambassadors provided over 300 hours of volunteer service. At the end of the season, 16 very deserving teams received $1,000 team grants awarded in honor of Alumni Ambassador volunteer service.

On behalf of the teams and volunteers, thank you for your continued support of FIRST Chesapeake Robotics and helping us to do what we do best--build tomorrow's technology leaders. 

All best,

Katarina Spears
Development Director
FIRST Chesapeake


2021 Women in STEM Program Sponsored by Leidos
2021 Women in STEM Program Sponsored by Leidos
Alumni Ambassadors Presented Live Virtual Programs
Alumni Ambassadors Presented Live Virtual Programs
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Organization Information


Location: Richmond, VA - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @firstchesapeake
Project Leader:
Scott Turnbull
Richmond , Virginia United States

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