Start A Team

FIRST Robotics Competition
FIRST Tech Challenge
FIRST Lego League

Start a FIRST Robotics Competition Team

What’s involved

A team of professional engineers, adult mentors, high school students, sponsorship, a meeting place, access to tools and free time during the build and competition season. Specifics and a season overview are available in the How to Start a Team Flyer.

Step 1: Register your information online in our Team Information Management System.

By registering your information, you will become a part of the FIRST Robotics Competition Community and begin receiving communications from FIRST. You will also receive a temporary team number in preparation of event registration in the fall.  Please note that completing this stage of the process does not commit you to becoming a team. You are only considered a registered team after your team has paid and selected an event (during the fall registration period). You may withdraw and receive a refund any time up until you take delivery of your kit of parts.

Step 2:  Get in touch with the Program Manager

The Program Manager knows the teams, schools and businesses in your area. She can help you form a plan for getting your team funded, organized, and in touch with other teams in the area for mentoring assistance. Please reach out to Rudiana Bunbury, Program Manager (FRC and FTC) for more information:

Step 3: Familiarize yourself with FIRST Resources

Here are some important FRC resources, that you may want to bookmark:

Start a FIRST Tech Challenge Team

Step 1: Learn about the FTC experience

Connect with NYC FIRST FTC/FRC Program Manager ( to learn the ins and outs of FIRST Tech Challenge. They will help you understand all the requirements for starting a team and can fill you in on what to expect during your Team’s rookie year. If possible, attend an FTC event in your area.  This will give you a good idea of what to expect and they are always free and open to the public.


Step 2: Enlist Coaches/Mentors

In the FIRST Tech Challenge, the terms Coach and Mentor are used interchangeably to describe an adult team member who leads students by example.  Mentors are expected to practice Gracious Professionalism and act as positive role models for the team.  A technical background is helpful, but not necessary. Coaches must acquire some basic knowledge of the programming environment and robot building.  Non-technical mentors can utilize the Non-Engineering Mentor Organization website for support groups and information.  

To find additional or technical Mentors for your team, contact high schools, colleges, chambers of commerce and technology companies in your area.  The FTC/FRC Program Manager can be a good resource for networking with the right people and helping you find a mentor!

Each team needs at least one coach or mentor over the age of 18 to register.

Step 3: Build your Team

Teams are made up of students who are ready to take on the challenges of high school level Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics concepts and apply them to robotics.  A team of 3-15 members is recommended.

Step 4: Register your Team

Once you’ve visited events, enlisted Mentors/Coaches and built your team, it’s time to register your team. Visit the Registration page for details on cost, budgeting and instructions on how to register your team.

Start a FIRST LEGO League Team

NYC FIRST assists parents and teachers who are looking to start a FIRST LEGO League team. However, we do not provide direct services (e.g. classroom instruction) nor do we place students on teams.  FIRST LEGO League teams in NYC are typically started as robotics after-school clubs or community groups led by parents.

FIRST LEGO League gives elementary and middle school students and their adult coaches the opportunity to work and create together to solve a common problem. If you would like to start a FIRST LEGO League team in your area, we welcome you and promise to provide you with all the support, ideas, and encouragement you need to succeed.

Remember: No experience required and you are never alone!

Start a Team in 4 Easy Steps

STEP 1: Learn All About FIRST LEGO League

FIRST LEGO League is an international community of teams who all tackle the same Challenge. Each year in August, FIRST LEGO League releases a new Challenge for teams that focuses on a scientific topic. Learn more about the program here.

STEP 2: Form Your Team

Recruit up to 10 team members ages 9 to 14 (or grades 4-8) and one other adult coach. Students can only be on one team, but a coach is allowed to coach multiple teams.

Your team will need to be committed to meeting regularly for at least 4 months, so use this opportunity to set expectations with your team members.

STEP 3: Register, Pay & Order Materials

You will need to create an account on to register your team and pay your registration fee. Note that you will be able to change your team name and designated coaches after your team is paid for.

You will need the following kits to participate in FIRST LEGO League:

We recommend one EV3 robot per 2-3 students, but teams may work on as many or as few robots as they want.

STEP 4: Stay Informed

Once you've registered your team, you will be added to the official mailing list for FIRST LEGO League in NYC! You'll receive e-mails about all types of important deadlines, from grant opportunities to qualifier registrations and it's important that you stay informed.

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