Young kids celebrating at FIRST Championship

FIRST is committed to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Building STEM literacy and confidence is required to be successful in nearly every endeavor in today’s technology-rich society. STEM competence and confidence creates pathways to well-paying jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities in the fastest-growing fields, creating the potential for young people to achieve purposeful and prosperous lives.

Collectively, we must enable our young people to grow up to solve the world’s most pressing problems, be strong citizens, and build a brighter future. FIRST is committed to bringing its programs to students who would benefit most, and is actively engaged in developing strategies that will ensure greater access to its programs and reduce inequalities.


At FIRST, we are committed to creating a diverse, inclusive, and equitable community for all our participants. Watch this compelling 2 minute video to see how you, as a coach or mentor, can ensure that you are inspiring success for your team.

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Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Statement

FIRST is committed to fostering, cultivating and preserving a culture of equity, diversity, and inclusion. We embrace and encourage differences in race, ethnicity, national origin, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability, age, religion, income or any other characteristics that make our adult-force and students unique.

Exploring, developing and implementing strategies to become more inclusive and ensure access to our programs to all students (as well as access to key supports) is critical for FIRST to reach its goal and mission. ALL young people should have the opportunity to become science and technology leaders. FIRST will remove barriers to program participation for underserved, underrepresented students. Pursuant to that end, FIRST Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion is a concerted, organized effort to develop strategies to make its programs more accessible and inclusive.

Underrepresented, Underserved & Vulnerable Youth

FIRST has prioritized underrepresented, underserved and vulnerable youth include but not limited to:

Underrepresented Populations

  • Hispanics & Latinos
  • African Americans
  • American Indians
  • Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders

Underserved Populations

  • Girls and young women
  • Economically disadvantaged students
  • First generation in college
  • Disconnected Youth
  • Those living in rural or urban areas

Vulnerable Youths

  • Youth emancipating from foster care
  • Runaway and homeless youth
  • Youth involved in the juvenile justice system
  • Immigrant youth and youth with limited English proficiency
  • Youth with disabilities and/or receiving special education
  • LGBTQ+ youth

Definitions from Committee on STEM Education (2013) and Fernandes-Alacantra (2014).

Thank you to our sponsors


EDI Sponsors

Shelley Henderson
Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion for FIRST
200 Bedford Street  |  Manchester, NH 03101  |
Phone: (603) 666-3906 x 711  |