October 2020
TopHear
FIRST!
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 an armadillo on a motorboat.
 

This Year is a Game Changer

The FIRST GAME CHANGERS powered by Star Wars: Force for Change season is underway! And as always there is important news
to share- Town Hall Meetings, Chesapeake Chats, FLL Explore in MD, Volunteer T-shirt Logo, Hails and Farewells, In Memoriam, and more- whew!!

So grab your roller skates- and 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.

FIRST Chesapeake Town Halls 
As expected things will be different in the 2020-21 season from prior years. In light of this, FIRST Chesapeake has been holding virtual town hall meetings to update and inform constituents. 

 All FIRST program volunteers in DC, MD, and VA were invited to watch a Virtual FIRST Volunteer Roundtable on Sept 24th. Leadership from FLL Explore, FLL Challenge, FTC, and FRC gave reports about competitions and this season's volunteer roles and needs.

The September 29th Town Hall discussed FIRST Chesapeake's plans for events for both FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Robotics Competition this season and answered viewer questions.

If you would like to view the recordings for these FIRST Chesapeake Town Hall meetings or any prior ones, click here

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Want to get FIRST Chesapeake volunteer information and updates straight in your Inbox? 

New FIRST Chesapeake Chats Coming Soon


We have been happy to bring you the FIRST Chesapeake Chats 
Sponsored by Newport News Shipbuilding this past spring. 
Watch for a new series of episodes this fall! 

Click here or the logo above to view the Chats archive and viewing links.
FLL Explore in Maryland Partner

Shout out to the new FIRST LEGO League partner in Maryland!

FIRST ® LEGO®  League Explore MD is run by Rockville Robotics, Inc., a non-profit whose mission is to foster a love of STEM among school age kids in Maryland, by encouraging and facilitating participation in FIRST® Robotics programs. 


FIRST Chesapeake Mailing Address
   Please ask your school bookkeeper or team non-profit organization to change our mailing address for registrations or other payments to:

FIRST Chesapeake
2101 Maywill St.
Richmond, VA 23230

We cannot guarantee that we will receive mail sent to a previous address.
FIRST Chesapeake Twitch and YouTube Channels
Did you know?? 

In order to reach as many people as possible, most FIRST Chesapeake presentations and events are broadcast online on our Twitch channel 

We also have video recordings of events available for later viewing on the FIRST Chesapeake YouTube channel

Check out both sites and subscribe today to stay up to date with our latest offerings!
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.
2020-21 Volunteer T-shirt Design Contest


We asked FIRST Chesapeake volunteers to vote for the 2020-2021 volunteer t-shirt logo, and this is the winning design.

The gift card winners randomly chosen from the entries are Ann S. and Jeanne H. 

Congratulations to our two winners and thank you to every FIRST Chesapeake volunteer who voted!

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Questions about individual volunteering or corporate community engagement with FIRST Chesapeake? Email us at volunteer@firstchesapeake.org
Hails and Farewells


Thank you to John Luvera for his work as the
FIRST Senior Mentor for Virginia last season. We appreciate his time and dedication to FIRST teams.

We welcome Patrick Foley as our new FIRST 
Senior Mentor for Virginia. Patrick is a long-time volunteer with FIRST Chesapeake and has served in a variety of roles including field supervisor and judge. 
FIRST Chesapeake Mourns the Passing of a Great Champion
Paula Gulak- photo from vcu.edu

We in the FIRST Chesapeake family were saddened to learn of the passing of Paula Gulak on August 18th. For those of you who may not have met Paula, she was not only a founding board member, but she was also incredibly instrumental in bringing FIRST programs to Virginia 20 years ago as a founding member of the NASA/VCU Regional Planning Committee. No job was too big or too small, and she passionately advocated for FIRST with everyone, from students, to corporations, to her extensive connections amongst Governors and elected officials. 

The impact Paula had on the growth of information technology in Virginia was remarkable. With her partners, she started one of the first women-owned technology companies in Central Virginia. She was also a founding member of the Greater Richmond Technology Counsel (now Tech RVA). One of her proudest accomplishments was the creation of Women in Technology, an organization that encourages women and girls in the field of technology.

For many years, Paula volunteered as a judge at FIRST events and served on FIRST planning committees. In addition to her love of technology, she also had a passion for the arts. She was a fiercely loyal friend to many and a proud mother (of an engineer) and grandmother. Paula was a true role model of love, loyalty, hard work, intelligence, and inclusion. Her spunk and lust for life influenced everyone she met. We are grateful for Paula's many contributions to establishing FIRST Chesapeake and for her fight to expand access to STEM programs. She will be missed by many, but her legacy remains to embrace each day fully and graciously.

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 on a team resource page 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.

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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.  


You can make a difference while you shop Amazon Prime Day deals on October 13 & 14. Simply shop at smile.amazon.com/ch/20-8081778 or with AmazonSmile ON in the Amazon Shopping app and AmazonSmile donates to VirginiaFIRST dba FIRST Chesapeake.


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