FIRST in Arizona has grown rapidly since it arrived here and it will not stop. We want to see FIRST in every community and school, with the same level of relevance we give to sports, throughout Arizona and we’ve already taken the FIRST steps down that road.
As a part of the Take Your Legislator to School program, Coconino High School hosted Representative Bob Thorpe, who has become a close-friend of the CocoNuts and has dedicated an entire day to judge at our FTC Championship. Here’s what he wrote to the Governor, State Superintendent and Presidents of the three state universities in response to his experience with our team, ”The CocoNuts robotics program provides that unique spark that is needed to alight the passions of our young people across educational, cultural and economic chasms. I personally want to do all that I can ensure the development of teams and programs within every K-12 school.” Representative Thorpe contacted us about hosting a FIRST festival on the steps of Arizona’s state capitol building.
In 2009, our coaches became the FTC affiliate partner for both Arizona and New Mexico. With only 8 teams in the whole state, the FTC program was on the verge of extinction. We made it our mission to revive the program. Now we have facilitated the growth of 64 teams and growing. We are working hard to get New Mexico FTC to be independent.
In 2015, Arizona recognized robotics as a varsity sport and is running the state competition in Northern Arizona. Our team has been recognized as one biggest supporter as our varsity qualifications are being used statewide.