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FIRST Robotics In VA Schools: Making a Lasting Impact on Academic Trajectories Nate Laverdure FIRST Robotics In VA Schools: Making a Lasting Impact on Academic Trajectories Nate Laverdure A Presentation To: Virginia Department of Education Division of Technology & Career Education

(For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) FIRST Lego League FIRST Tech Challenge (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) FIRST Lego League FIRST Tech Challenge FIRST Robotics Competition

2007 Competition: “Rack & Roll” 2007 Competition: “Rack & Roll”

2002 Competition: “Zone Zeal” 2002 Competition: “Zone Zeal”

2006 Competition: “Aim High” 2006 Competition: “Aim High”

2005 Competition: “Triple Play” 2005 Competition: “Triple Play”

FIRST is Expanding 37, 000 Students 1, 500 Teams from 8 countries and every FIRST is Expanding 37, 000 Students 1, 500 Teams from 8 countries and every state in the U. S. 41 Regional Events in Brazil, Canada, Israel, U. S. FIRST 2007 Annual Report

FIRST is Making an Impact 2005 Independent study by Brandeis University Funded by the FIRST is Making an Impact 2005 Independent study by Brandeis University Funded by the Ford Foundation

Why are Science and Technology Careers Important in VA? An engineering gap? In an Why are Science and Technology Careers Important in VA? An engineering gap? In an apples-to-apples comparison, the US still confers more four-year engineering degrees than India, and its gap with China is less than half of what other reports suggest. ENGINEERING U. S. * INDIA CHINA Bachelor’s Degrees 137, 437 112, 000 351, 537 Associate degrees (or equivalent**) 84, 898 103, 000 292, 569 *US figures adjusted to reflect more inclusive measures used by India **Three-year diplomas in India; short-cycle degrees in China graduates twice as many engineers as U. S. Important to a sustainable & independent economy Image: Christian Science Monitor; Data: Duke University Study

Image: “Construction of the Three Gorges Dam” by Flickr user H@r@ld (some rights reserved) Image: “Construction of the Three Gorges Dam” by Flickr user [email protected]@ld (some rights reserved)

Image: Millau Viaduct (in public domain) Image: Millau Viaduct (in public domain)

Image: Venetian Buildings by The Triple Bottom Line Blog; wwwgetsustainable. net (all rights reserved) Image: Venetian Buildings by The Triple Bottom Line Blog; wwwgetsustainable. net (all rights reserved)

Why are Science and Technology Careers Important in VA? Engineering may be undervalued Cannot Why are Science and Technology Careers Important in VA? Engineering may be undervalued Cannot change the economy Must change the culture Digest of Education Statistics, 2006

Changing Culture } Football heroes Political heroes Comic book heroes Business heroes Fireman heroes Changing Culture } Football heroes Political heroes Comic book heroes Business heroes Fireman heroes Music heroes War heroes Astronaut heroes Religious heroes TV heroes …& Guitar Heroes Why not science & technology heroes?

The FIRST Vision The FIRST Vision "To transform our culture by creating a world where science and technology are celebrated and where young people dream of becoming science and technology heroes. “ — Dean Kamen, FIRST Founder