CWU News

FIRST Robotics Competition to be Held Saturday at CWU

Teams of young people compete in a 2013 FIRST LEGO League robotics competition at CWU.

More than 300 students, ages 9 to 14, from 32 teams statewide will come to Central Washington University on Saturday, February 1, to demonstrate their knowledge of robots.

From noon to 3:30 p.m., in the university’s Student Union and Recreation Center, the students will take part in the FIRST LEGO League Competition. FIRST is an acronym meaning “For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology.”

CWU has partnered with Washington FIRST Robotics for the competitions that challenge students to build and program robots using Lego Mindstreams technology. 

This year’s event is titled “Nature’s Fury: prepare, be safe, rebuild.” Teams will be judged on how their robots perform on “missions” of surviving and rebuilding after natural disasters occur, teamwork, and research on recommendations for communities affected by natural disasters.

“These are our future engineers, entrepreneurs, farmers, inventors, and scientists,” says Washington FIRST Robotics President Erin McCallum. “The goal of the competition is to motivate them to pursue education and career opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), while building self-confidence, knowledge, and life skills.”

Saturday’s competition is free to watch. An awards ceremony will immediately follow the event. Winning teams will advance to the eastern Washington semifinals on February 15 in Moses Lake. Winners there will return to CWU for the state championships on February 22. 

FIRST is known among students as the ‘coolest’ STEM education that exists,” McCallum adds.

Photo: The Student Union and Recreation Center at Central Washington University is filled with teams of young people competing in a FIRST LEGO League competition in 2013.

Media contact: Robert Lowery, CWU Public Affairs, 509-963-1487,

January 30, 2014