SR16: Commending FIRST Robotics.

SENATE RESOLUTION NO. 16
Offered February 28, 2006
Commending FIRST Robotics.
Patron-- Ruff

WHEREAS, FIRST Robotics is a mentoring and promotion of engineering skills program, cumulating with an annual robotics competition, involving over 3,800 middle and high school students from schools throughout the state, and will take place at Virginia Commonwealth University on March 3rd and 4th, 2006; and

WHEREAS, "FIRST" stands for "For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology," and robotics refers to the actual robot built; the program involves mentoring students while they create the robot for competition; and

WHEREAS, the program initially began with funding through a partnership formed with Virginia Commonwealth University and state funding through the Virginia Business-Education Partnership, and has grown to encompass thousands of mentors in engineering and related fields working with students to  help  create the robots; and

WHEREAS, this is the seventh year the program has been operating in Virginia, and it has grown into the largest regional program in the country as determined by the number of participants; and

WHEREAS, it is a challenge to prepare students for careers in science, research, and engineering and related fields, and FIRST Robotics has met the challenge through providing an intellectual and fun arena to explore these disciplines; and

WHEREAS, major funders for this entertaining and educational event include NASA-Langley, Infinion, Raytheon, and Genworth Financial and over 300 other corporate sponsors, and many other businesses and individuals contribute time and money; and

WHEREAS, this successful program promotes collaboration and uses innovation to solve challenging problems, and this experience builds problem-solving skills and prepares the Commonwealth's young people to become valued workers and outstanding citizens; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the Senate of Virginia hereby commend FIRST Robitics for their efforts to strengthen the math, science, and technology skills of Virginia's young people;  and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the Senate prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to Patricia Cook, Regional Director of Virginia, FIRST Robotics, as an expression of the Senate of Virginia's support and enthusiasm for the program's continued success.