FTC is designed for students in grades 7-12 to compete head to head, using a sports model. Teams are responsible for designing, building, and programming their robots to compete in an alliance format against other teams. The robot kit is reusable from year-to-year and is programmed using a variety of languages. Teams, including coaches, mentors and volunteers, are required to develop strategy and build robots based on sound engineering principles. Awards are given for the competition as well as for community outreach, design, and other real-world accomplishments.
Our FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) team 7438 was started in 2013. FTC is primarily used as a training ground for new members and an environment to develop leadership in veteran students. The robots are much smaller than the ones in FRC, and are able to be built with modular parts. They can be taken apart and assembled quickly, allowing students to prototype and giving room for modifications.
FTC also allows our FRC drivers to get practice on the field. It is an introduction to the engineering process. Progress is facilitated through the SCRUM system where team members meet every day discussing the tasks accomplished and the tasks that need to be done. The engineering process is recorded in the Engineering Notebook, that documents each day in the 12-week build season and the challenges each team faced.