The Scottish Scrimmage - FIRST Tech Challenge

08 January 2024

Back in December, Hearts' Innovation Centre welcomed FIRST Tech Challenge for the Scottish Scrimmage.

The FIRST Tech Challenge is the world's largest robotics competition, youngsters aged 12-18 work together in teams to design and build a robot over the course of six months. The FIRST Tech Challenge's aim is to 'build more than robots' as young people develop their teamwork, creativity, and problem-solving skills, whilst broadening their understanding of STEM education and career pathways.

The Hearts Innovation Centre has become the first Scottish Champion Organisation of FIRST Tech Challenge, meaning for the first time in the history of the challenge, Scottish teams have a Scottish location to meet and compete in - Tynecastle Park.

Ainsley Carnarvon, the Innovation Centre's Digital Education Strategic Programme Manager, said:

"In a time where education and skills for the future workforce need to adapt to the changes brought about by automation, artificial intelligence, and robotics, the Innovation Centre takes immense pride in playing a leading role in advancing robotics knowledge and engineering skills within high schools and youth groups across the country.

We're thrilled to introduce the FIRST Tech Challenge to Scotland, a globally recognised robotics challenge, standing proudly at the forefront of this initiative with the support and expert guidance from the National Robotarium.

Embracing the FIRST Tech Challenge opens up exciting opportunities for teachers and students to acquire skills and experiences, that align with the ever-evolving landscape, addressing areas not yet covered by Scotland’s current Secondary School curriculum."

The ten Scottish teams were welcomed to Tynecastle Park on Tuesday, December 12th for the Scottish Scrimmage. The teams enjoyed a robotics demonstration from the National Robotarium, the UK's centre for Robotics and Artificial Intelligence, and were given the opportunity to test their robots on a replica of the playing field for this year's challenge. The Innovation Centre proudly displayed creations from the free after-school robotics club, Robo LEGO Dojo.

The teams will meet again at Tynecastle Park in March for the Scottish Qualifiers, with the Final taking place later in the year in Cambridge, England.


Find out more about FIRST Tech Challenge UK