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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

$20 million for High School Student Robotics Program

United States Foundation For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST), a nonprofit organization in Manchester, N.H. founded by U.S. entrepreneur Dean Kamen in 1989 to encourage youth to become leaders in science and technology, will get up to $20 million over the next five years of NASA to support a national program to inspire student interest in science, technology and mathematics with a focus on robotic technology.
NASA is the largest organization involved with FIRST and has participated since 1995. In 1999, NASA and FIRST signed a memorandum of agreement to cooperatively expand the availability of technology development, education and inspiration programs to students throughout the country.

FIRST reaches about 235.000 students most of them via FIRST LEGO League (FLL) with over 147.000 students ages 9-16 years, in 57 countries and with a design and build format utilizing Danish LEGO Mindstorm technologies.

As reported here before also Google will provide $3 million to support FIRST robotics teams. 

In 1998, The LEGO Group was a pioneer in educational consumer robotics with the launch of the LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Robotics Invention System, that introduced children to the world of robotics.
The Danish LEGO Group’s revenue in 2009 was about US $ 2,09 billion (DKK 11,661 million) an increase by 22.4%.

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