Youth robotics global championship returns to Detroit


DETROIT (AP) — In a story April 26 about the FIRST Championship robotics competition, The Associated Press reported erroneously the first name of the FIRST president. His name is Don Bossi, not Dan.

A corrected version of the story is below:

Youth robotics global championship returns to Detroit

Thousands of students from dozens of countries are in Detroit this week competing in the biggest youth robotics event in the world


Hollywood Star's Wife Played Key Role in International Criminal Court's Arrest Warrant for Israeli Leaders

Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) — Thousands of students from dozens of countries are in Detroit this week competing in the biggest youth robotics event in the world.

Still, organizers of the FIRST Championship hope it gets a lot bigger

“Here in the United States, about 12% of schools have a FIRST team, serving 18% of the students. So, there’s still a lot of kids out there that don’t have easy access to our programs,” said Don Bossi, the president of FIRST, which stands for For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology.

“And that’s our passion. That’s our mission to make these programs available and accessible to every kid everywhere.”

More than 40,000 people are attending this year’s event, including 17,000 students representing 700 teams from 35 countries.

Bossi, a former tech executive with a doctorate in electrical engineering from MIT, said the Manchester, New Hampshire-based nonprofit is trying to attract more students, including from under-represented communities.

Mary Pangowish, 17, is the captain of the First Nations STEM team that qualified for its first FIRST Championship in only its fifth year of existence.

“We’re a team of all First Nations kids. We are all Ojibwe, Odawa, Potawatomi,” Pangowish said. “We’re the first of our kind, really, to come to the world championships. We’ve never seen an all-indigenous team make it to the world championships.”

Daughter of American Who Vanished in 2017 Reveals Devastating Update US Intel Gave Her

Pangowish worked with her teammates on their robot between matches and spent time spreading the word about their journey to the Motor City.

When a FIRST judge visited the First Nations STEM team’s area in the pits, Pangowish told her: “We’re so proud to be here. We want to show our culture. We want to show that we’re just as capable as everyone else.”

And they did both, competing successfully in the outer space-themed matches and at one point heading outside to take part in a traditional cleansing ceremony.

“We’re kind of blazing a trail for indigenous students to follow in our footsteps, to know that they can experience the world championships, because they deserve it just as much as any other team,” Pangowish said.

The FIRST Championship also was held in Detroit last year and will be back in 2020. Matches are held during the week at the Cobo Center downtown before moving to Ford Field, home of the NFL’s Detroit Lions, on Saturday for the event’s championship matches.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands. Photo credit: @AP on Twitter
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
New York City