Home Shenandoah Valley Technology Council supports science education effort

Shenandoah Valley Technology Council supports science education effort


svtcThe Shenandoah Valley Technology Council is a supporter of FIRST Lego League’s mission to engage kids in science and technology.

The SVTC is once again this year offering sponsorship to help offset the costs of new FLL teams forming in the Shenandoah Valley. Seeing that the U.S. future workforce will need to be strong in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), all of which can be found in the FLL activities, the SVTC is again supporting new, local Valley Teams.  We are seeking applications and will re-imburse up to half the start-up cost (approx. $350.) for up to three teams.

The FLL website (www.firstlegoleague.org) is a great resource for parents and prospective coaches to learn how FLL works and how to start a team.  The VA-DCFLL website (www.va-dcfll.org)is also a great resource and includes a link to apply for the SVTC Sponsorship as does www.svtc-va.org.

“The best way to summarize FIRST LEGO League is to say that it is a robotics program for 9 to 16 year olds, which is designed to get children excited about science and technology — and teach them valuable employment and life skills. FLL can be used in a classroom setting but is not solely designed for this purpose. Teams, composed of up to ten children with at least one adult coach, can also be associated with a pre-existing club or organization, homeschooled, or just be a group of friends who wish to do something awesome. Contrary to popular belief, our coaches DO NOT need any technical experience. In FLL, the children do the work! And the work is programming an autonomous robot (using the LEGO® MINDSTORMS® robot set) to score points on a thematic playing surface, creating an innovative solution to a problem as part of their project.”

FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) was founded in 1989 to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology. FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) brings these visions to life through an exciting alliance between two world-class organizations: For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST®) and The LEGO GroupFLL is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit public charity with over 20,000+ teams in over 70 countries.  VA-DC FLL is the largest FLL group in the world with over 600 teams and more than 20 regional qualifying tournaments and events in Virginia and Washington D.C.

What FLL teams accomplish is nothing short of amazing. It’s fun. It’s exciting. And the skills they learn will last a lifetime.   Elementary and middle-school students get to:

  • Design, build, test and program robots using LEGO MINDSTORMS® technology
  • Apply real-world math and science concepts
  • Research challenges facing today’s scientists
  • Learn critical thinking, team-building and presentation skills
  • Participate in tournaments and celebrations

With opportunities to compete nationally and internationally through high school, many colleges and universities, professional associations, and corporations offer college scholarships to high school students on FIRST teams. For 2014, there are over 180 confirmed scholarship providers that are making available over 900 individual scholarship opportunities with a total value of more than $20,000,000.

The SVTC also supports FLL by providing program support and volunteer hours at the regional and state competitions held each year on the James Madison University Campus.


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