Parkway South participates in the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC). In the past, we have also competed in the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) for more than ten consecutive years. Our program is also committed to community outreach; we sponsor and assist several FLL teams at local elementary schools.
The FIRST Tech Challenge is designed for students in grades 7-12 to compete head to head, using a sports model. Teams are responsible for designing, building, and programming their robots to compete in an alliance format against other teams. The robot kit is reusable from year-to-year and is programmed using a variety of languages. Teams, including coaches, mentors and volunteers, are required to develop strategy and build robots based on sound engineering principles. Awards are given for the competition as well as for community outreach, design, and other real-world accomplishments.
As a single team, we field three different robots to the FTC as Team 406, 407, and 408.
FIRST describes the FRC competition as "The varsity sport for the mind," FRC combines the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and technology. Under strict rules, limited resources, and time limits, teams of 25 students or more are challenged to raise funds, design a team brand, hone teamwork skills, and build and program robots to perform prescribed tasks against a field of competitors. It's as close to real-world engineering as a student can get. Volunteer professional mentors lend their time and talents to guide each team.