CRyptonite is part of FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), an international non-profit organization with a mission to transform our culture and inspire young people to be technology leaders.

FIRST was founded in 1989 by prolific inventor Dean Kamen as he became frustrated with popular culture's obsession over sports and entertainment with little interest in science and technology. He believed that it was necessary to present science and technology in a fun and exciting way. Teaming up with MIT mechanical engineer professor Woodie Flowers, Mr. Kamen launched a program called FIRST.

FIRST Founders

Dean Kamen

Woodie Flowers

The FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) began in 1992 with only 28 teams competing in a New Hampshire high school gym. It paired high school students with professional engineers as mentors to teach them engineering, science, and technology in a fun and engaging way. This idea quickly caught on and spread throughout the country. As it grew, FRC stayed true to its core values of "Gracious Professionalism®" - even though teams fiercely compete, they respect their competitors and support them when it is needed.

Today, there are more than 5,784 FRC teams, and FIRST has grown to encompass numerous programs. The FIRST LEGO® League (FLL) and FIRST LEGO® League Jr. programs give elementary and middle school students the chance to use engineering principles with Lego robots, and the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) teaches science and technology to middle school and high school students. In total, FIRST has more than 20,000 teams impacting the lives of over 250,000 students a year.

As any CRyptonite student can attest, FIRST is a truly incredible organization. Find out more about FIRST at