(Photo: Argenis Apolinario, courtesy of FIRST)
The first time I heard about FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), I was a homeschooling mother. My son had come home telling me about another homeschooling family that was putting together a FIRST robotics team for K-12. I knew if robotics were involved that my son would love it.
Years later, I would write about FIRST for Black Enterprise. I interviewed a young man who competed on a team and planned to study engineering in college. His passion for FIRST was palpable.
Around the time that I wrote that piece, FIRST had begun developing equity, diversity, and inclusion as a core organizational strategy. I recently spoke with Don Bossi, president of FIRST, about the organization’s power to ignite and sustain in kids a passion for STEM, and its aim of providing greater access to African American, low income, and other underrepresented groups, such as First Nations.