January 2020
A quarterly newsletter to keep you informed. Dig it.

Did you miss us?

It's a brand new quarter and a brand new   newsletter! 
And it's more fun than a shoebox full of twigs.  

Excitement Is Building

The FIRST RISE powered by Star Wars: Force for Change season is underway! There is always important news to share- Women in STEM Breakfast, Team Grants, a new Mentor award, Alumni Ambassadors, Mentoring Workshop, Volunteer Opportunities, Events Calendar,  and more- whew !!

So grab your torque wrench-  a nd keep reading for these topics  and more.

And please pass this newsletter on to teams, parents and students.
(a web link is at the top of this email- the "click here")
To subscribe to the newsletter, just fill out this form.

Looking for some weekend reading? 
The FIRST Chesapeake Annual Report is now available! Thank you to our teams, volunteers, sponsors, and partners for another great year.

Women in STEM Breakfast Sponsored by Rolls-Royce
Kathryn Elliott (left) Defense Sector Capability Manager, Performance and AeroThermal Systems for Rolls-Royce, presented the 2020 Award to Elizabeth Lindsey.

Technology-industry professionals gathered on Thursday, January 23 at the UVA Darden Conference Center in Arlington, Virginia to celebrate Reaching for the Stars: Women in STEM Sponsored by Rolls-Royce and hosted by FIRST Chesapeake. The event featured the presentation of the 2020 Reaching for the Stars Award, as well as a Robotics Showcase and Reaching for the Stars Scholarships sponsored by Dominion Energy.

Representatives of Dominion Energy attended the Women in STEM Breakfast to help honor the scholarship recipients.

Thanks to Dominion Energy, the second annual Women in STEM Breakfast also featured Reaching for the Stars Scholarships for three outstanding young women associated with FIRST Chesapeake teams. Over 50 applications were received for three available scholarships, a total of $5,000 in awards.

To see more photos click here
Jim and Laraine Schubert Unsung Hero: Mentor of the Year Award
Every year we hear the most amazing stories about coaches and mentors who go above and beyond for their teams and in their communities. This year, we are pleased to recognize one of these outstanding volunteers with the Jim and Laraine Schubert Unsung Hero: Mentor of the Year Award. This award recognizes a  FIRST  Chesapeake FTC or FRC Mentor who has gone above and beyond to support the 5 Strategic Pillars of  FIRST . The award winner will be announced at the  FIRST  Chesapeake District Championship Sponsored by Newport News Shipbuilding on Saturday, April 4th, at the Hampton Coliseum. 

The Award will include complimentary air travel and lodging at the FIRST World Championship in Detroit, a meal stipend, and invitations to select VIP events at the World Championship. (NOTE: The Mentor's team does not need to qualify for Worlds for the Mentor to attend.) 

Click here for more information and the application.
Introducing the 2020 Alumni Ambassador Cohort
Sponsored by Booz Allen Hamilton

Meet the full 2020 Cohort Sponsored by  Booz Allen Hamilton  by visiting  this webpage
 Also watch for future social media posts detailing their volunteer efforts this season!

What is the  FIRST  Chesapeake Alumni Ambassador Program?

The  FIRST Chesapeake Alumni Ambassador Program is a pilot program designed to help achieve a few strategic goals:
  • Engage FIRST Alumni as event volunteers and mentors;
    Encourage enhanced training to prepare FIRST alumni for more complex volunteer roles;
  • Provide professional development opportunities to better qualify FIRST alumni as role models and mentors;
  • Utilize alumni at FIRST Chesapeake District events as representatives who embody the program ideals of Gracious Professionalism and Coopertition.
FIRST Tech Challenge Season to End on February 22nd with the FTC State Championship Sponsored by Capital One
Watch the 2019-2020 challenge, Skystone, played one more time by 58 of the best and brightest FTC teams in Virginia at the FTC State Championship Sponsored by Capital One at Atlee High School. Mentors are invited to relax and enjoy complimentary snacks and beverages in the Mentor Lounge Sponsored by Bechtel
FIRST Chesapeake Mentoring Workshops Presented by MENTOR Virginia
You asked and we listened.....The Team Advisory Committee suggested that mentors, volunteers, and staff could benefit from a workshop focusing upon mentoring and conflict resolution this season. 
Some of the mentoring workshop attendees

Our latest workshop took place Saturday, January 25th in Arlington, VA. 

The 20+ participants gained a solid understanding of: a mentor's role, relationship-building techniques, stages of relationship development, reporting requirements, communication, setting boundaries, and the positive youth development framework.

We plan to have other mentoring sessions, and we urge current and potential mentors and event volunteers, and anyone interested in improving their FIRST Chesapeake mentoring or youth development skills to watch for future announcements.
FIRST Team Communications
FIRST Chesapeake was asked if they could help facilitate communications between teams in the DC, Maryland, Virginia areas. 

Since we cannot share team contact information that has been provided through FIRST Headquarters, we proposed that interested teams create a basic team gmail address that can be posted under a team info tab on our website. Teams would be listed by geographic location, as well as program. (Other information such as website and social media will also be included). It is our hope that this directory will encourage teams to connect with each other on a local level. 

If you are interested in registering your team, please complete this form. https://bit.ly/2lrDqVF
Upcoming Events Calendar
Here are some upcoming FIRST and STEM-related events. Click through the links  for more information or visit the   for even more event listings.
Learn more about volunteering with FIRST Chesapeake here.
Volunteering Opportunities Are Now Open On VMS!

Now is the time to sign up for FIRST Robotics Competition events! FRC events are listed on VMS and ready for you to register - j ust log in or sign up in the upper right-hand corner.

A FIRST Chesapeake event requires over 100 volunteers each day. Regardless if you have technical or non-technical expertise, there is a volunteer role for you!

Questions about individual volunteering or corporate community engagement with FIRST Chesapeake? Email us at volunteer@firstchesapeake.org
Showbest Fixture FIRST Robotics Competition Team Grants Available
  Showbest Fixture Corporation  has generously provided funding for FRC team grants for the 2020 season. All registered FRC teams in DC, Maryland and Virginia are eligible to apply for this needs-based award. 

Applications must be submitted on-line by 4pm, on February 7, 2020. Awards will be announced by February 21, 2020. 
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion- a Robotics Story
The RoboLords participating in Eagle Ridge Middle School Diversity Night
This season we asked teams to submit material, information, and stories for inclusion into the newsletter.

This quarter we bring to you an outreach article about Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Education by the RoboLords (FTC Team 1112). 

Would you like to submit an article or material for publication in Hear  FIRST! - click  here for guidelines.
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Keep up with all things FTC and FRC by liking and or following FIRST Chesapeake on all our social media accounts! 

Don't miss out- 
Now's the time to search for scholarships for rising seniors 
and FIRST Alumni.  

Use Amazonsmile and choose 
VirginiaFIRST dba FIRST Chesapeake as your charity!

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