FIRST Tech Challenge Director to Keynote Annual Kickoff for Rockwell Collins Educational Outreach Program

FIRST News Release

FIRST® Tech Challenge Director to Keynote Annual Kickoff for Rockwell Collins Educational Outreach Program

Ken Johnson to stress importance of student robotics in community, business partnerships  

MANCHESTER, N.H., August 12, 2010 - FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a not-for-profit organization founded by inventor Dean Kamen to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology, today announced that its Director of the FIRST® Tech Challenge (FTC®), Ken Johnson, will deliver a keynote address to kick off "Engineering Experiences," a national educational outreach program sponsored by Rockwell Collins.

What:               Mr. Johnson’s keynote will describe what it will take to inspire the next generation of engineers and innovators at "Engineering Experiences," a nationwide educational outreach partnership program for students in grades K-12. The kickoff is designed to rally volunteers around the importance of their work to promote STEM in general and FIRST robotics in particular.

When:              Friday, Aug. 20, 2010, 7:00 a.m. Central Time

Where:             Marriott Hotel, Cedar Rapids, Iowa                     

Event:              "Engineering Experiences" Kickoff is an annual event designed to engage and motivate volunteers who work with students through hands-on experiences. The event brings together a diverse group of more than 500 people, including educators, Rockwell Collins leadership and volunteers, elected officials and community leaders. 

Presenters:      Ken Johnson, Director, FIRST Tech Challenge

                         Clay Jones, Chairman, CEO and President, Rockwell Collins

About FIRST®

Accomplished inventor Dean Kamen founded FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people. Based in Manchester, N.H., FIRST designs accessible, innovative programs to build self-confidence, knowledge, and life skills while motivating young people to pursue opportunities in science, technology, and engineering. With support from three out of every five Fortune 500 companies and more than $12 million in college scholarships, the not-for-profit organization hosts the FIRST® Robotics Competition (FRC® ) and FIRST® Tech Challenge (FTC® ) for high-school students, FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL® ) for 9 to 14-year-olds, (9 to 16-year-olds outside the U.S. and Canada) and Junior FIRST® LEGO® League (Jr.FLLT) for 6 to 9-year-olds. Gracious ProfessionalismT is a way of doing things that encourages high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and respects individuals and the community. To learn more about FIRST, go to

Media Contact: 

Dennis Garrigan, FIRST