Frequently Asked Questions
- How do I participate in the FIRST Global Competition?
FIRST Global’s mission is to inspire the youth of the world to pursue careers in STEM so that they can become future leaders in resolving our world’s technological challenges and to teach them the value of collaborating with others to reach their goals. To achieve these goals, FIRST Global invites each country to send one team to its “olympics”-style event, a choice that each nation makes in its own way. If you’re interested in participating, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- What equipment is used in the FIRST Global Competition?
FIRST Global teams will each be provided with a self-contained educational robotics kit that includes all needed mechanical, electrical, and software components. The build set is designed to be usable by both beginner and experienced teams.
The equipment is divided into a “build component” and a “programming component.” Some of the build components include brackets, extrusions, fastening hardware, hardware adaptors, bearings, wheels of different sizes, gears, pulleys, motors, servos, and sprockets. All parts can be fastened together with parts inside of the kit and do not require additional connective materials.
Some of the programming component options include Android Studios suite (which allows coding in Java), along with a visual programming block language that is for beginners.
- When can I build my robot for the FIRST Global Challenge 2018?
FIRST Global Challenge participants will begin building their robot after the robot kit is shipped. Teams are welcome to continue building all the way until the team arrives in Mexico City for the 2018 competition.
- When and where will the 2018 FIRST Global robotics game take place?
The 2018 FIRST Global robotics game will be held in Mexico City.
- What are the Grand Challenges for Engineering and how do they relate to FIRST Global?
The Grand Challenges for Engineering are the 14 most pressing engineering challenges facing the world as identified by the US National Academy of Engineering, UK Royal Academy of Engineering, and Chinese Academy of Engineering. The challenges range from finding solutions to energy and education to medicine and cyberspace. The game design for the FIRST Global robotics game will draw thematic inspiration from a different Grand Challenge every year, which began with providing access to clean water in the 2017 challenge.
- I am a member of a FIRST Global team. Where can I get help or advice when building my robot?
You are welcome to visit the Robot Questions page of the FIRST Global website, where you will be connected to the Global STEM Corps (GSC) – a vast volunteer network ready to serve you. You will be able to ask our STEM activists your mechanical, electrical, programming and other robot related questions 24/7.
Teams may choose to work with a qualified volunteer(s) on a long-term basis. This mentor(s) will be available to work with you on a prearranged schedule that you both find convenient. You can submit a request for a long-term mentor(s) on the Robot Questions page of the website.
- How can I get involved?
If you are interested in becoming involved in FIRST Global as either a international robotic mentor or at the game as an on-site volunteer, there are two great ways you can get involved:
(1) The Global STEM Corps (GSC) is an international group of STEM activists dedicated to working directly with a team from another country. Their active mentorship will bring inspiration to regions of the world that are preparing to step onto the stage of international robotics. People with all types of skills sets can make a difference in the following two initiatives.
- Create an International Partnership: Bring the excitement of STEM on a personal level by becoming the international partner of a team. Fill in some basic information about yourself or your organization on the GSC website and our organizers will make you the official partner of a nation’s team taking part in the FIRST Global Challenge. After receiving your partner team’s information, you will be able to virtually mentor this team through video, email and other internet tools.
If you are interested in becoming a GSC Mentor or learning more about the program, please visit the Global STEM Corps home page.
(2) The second way you can get involved is as a volunteer at the FIRST Global Challenge in Mexico City. Volunteers are welcome to serve in a multitude of different roles, and these positions are available for people with many different talents and experience levels.
Background checks are required for all volunteer positions, including the Global STEM Corps. They are paid for by FIRST Global.
- Can I attend the event as a spectator?
Yes! The event will be open to the public free of charge. Volunteers will be given priority for event access, and attendance information for the general public will be posted prior to the opening of the event. If you have any questions about attending, you can reach out to email@example.com for more information.
- How many individuals are on a team?
Each team must consist of between three and seven students, ages 14 to 18 years old, along with one adult technical mentor/coach. This group forms the official team. Note that there is no limit to the number of team members or adult technical mentors/coaches who can work on the robot at home. However, official credentials will only be issued to a maximum of seven student competitors and one adult technical mentor/coach for the event. For any special requests or extenuating circumstances, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- How do I secure passports for members of my team?
You can view a chart that provides passport and visa information we have found for each country. We try to keep it as up to date as possible to help teams with their planning process. However, our chart is NOT an official source so you MUST still check with your country’s own passport authority for accurate passport information, and the Mexico Embassy in your country for exact Visa information. Be advised that FIRST Global cannot be responsible for any errors caused by relying just on our assistance chart, as you need to verify official sources in your own country to be sure.
- Do I need to secure Visas for members of my team?
Unless you are from a county that is included in the Mexico’s Visa Waiver Program, you will be required to secure visas for every member of your team. If you are from a country that is included in the Visa Waiver Program, you may still be required to secure a visa to travel for a number of reasons. Therefore, you must still check with the Mexico Embassy located in your country to be sure. This chart shows passport and visa information we have been able to find for each country. The chart is NOT an official source so you MUST still check with your country’s own passport authority for accurate passport information, and the Mexico Embassy in your country for exact Visa information. Be advised that FIRST Global cannot be responsible for any errors caused by relying just on our assistance chart, as you need to verify official sources in your own country to be sure.
- What if I have an interesting photo/video/story I’d like featured on FIRST Global’s website or social media platforms?
If you have any photos, videos, or stories you would like to have featured on the FIRST Global website or social media platforms, please contact email@example.com.
- What if I have a problem accessing the FIRST Global website or other digital content?
If you have trouble accessing any part of the website, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Can I get more than one robot kit?
Yes, with arrangements made to pay for the costs of the robot kit and its shipping.
- How do I register my team for the FIRST Global Challenge?
Once your team is confirmed as attending, the official team mentor will be emailed information for how to register.