[Blog] Ten things you need to know about FIRST Robotics in Michigan

By Josh Paciorek

First Robotics Picture

Friday, April 10, 2015

It’s a sport like no other.  FIRST Robotics, a national program where students use robots to compete for victory, offers high schoolers the opportunity to build, design, and program remote-controlled robots that battle in two-minute games. Often, students get to work side-by-side with professional engineers while building the robots.

Tomorrow, Grand Rapids will host the Michigan FIRST Robotics state championship, and Governor Snyder will be in attendance. 

“Michigan has long been a global leader in design and engineering,” the governor said. “And FIRST Robotics is a program that is inspiring the next generation of innovators.”

If you’re considering joining a FIRST Robotics teams, check out these ten facts about FIRST Robotics in Michigan:

  1. Michigan is home to the most FIRST Robotics teams in the United States with 345 teams –107 more teams than California.
  2. Michigan is home to 77 rookie FIRST Robotics teams this year. 
  3. For the second consecutive year, Michigan created more FIRST Robotics teams than all of the other 49 states combined
  4. This year, the FIRST Robotics state championship had to move to a larger venue-- the Grand Rapids DeltaPlex—because the size of the competition grew from 64 teams to 102 teams. 
  5. Two FIRST Robotics teams from Michigan were part of the winning alliance at 2014 FIRST Robotics World Championships in St. Louis -FRC team #469, “Las Guerrillas”, from Bloomfield Hills-International Academy and FRC team #74, “Team C.H.A.O.S.”, from Holland High and Black River Public School.
  6. Michigan’s FIRST Robotics Program has its own T.V. show-- the RoboZone show-- the only FIRST Robotics TV show in the nation.
  7. Governor Snyder invested $2 million in the state’s FIRST Robotics program in Fiscal Year 2015.
  8. When Governor Snyder signed the FY 2015 state budget, FIRST Robotics students and even their robots joined the Governor at the budget signing ceremony.
  9. Michigan is at the center of the fast-growing robotics industry with nearly 58,000 robotics jobs, the third most in the country.
  10. Detroit has been selected to host the 2018-2020 FIRST Robotics World Championships, which is projected to generate as much as $90 million in economic impact for the Comeback State.