Supporting our Community

Impact of the FIRST program on our community

Through FIRST, 2556 has impacted over 20,000 people just last year with robot demonstrations at local middle schools, FLL events, Boy Scouts events, parades and sporting events, and our own Earth Day Open House. By creating lesson plans for robotics classes in the last three years, FIRST has changed the way STEM is taught in public schools. 2556 has also created ORBIT, a non-FIRST competition that mirrors FLL’s structure, that encourages kids who are not part of a FIRST team to learn robotics.

Spread the FIRST message

2556 strives to bridge the gap where STEM education is lacking locally and internationally. By creating and sending 3D printed cars that teach children how gear ratios affect speed and torque to an underfunded school in Lima, Peru, 2556 expands STEM literacy in a technologically underdeveloped country. ORBIT, an elementary and middle school EV3 competition, also expands FIRST in our community by encouraging students who are not yet on a FIRST team to learn more about STEM and robotics.

Inspiring other FIRST team members

Being a FIRST leader across 4 counties and 9265 sq miles, 2556 knows the importance of being a FIRST role model. 2556 has hosted the first FRC kickoff in the Florida panhandle, teaching 6 FRC teams across county and state lines important skills to guide them through build season. By providing on-site mentoring and assistance at every FLL event in the county, 2556 has been described by our FLL Regional Coordinator as the “the greatest examples of mentors, which trickles down [to FLL teams].”

Initiatives to help start or form other FRC teams

2556 has pioneered ECRA, a foundation to establish and sustain FRC teams in every high school in the county within 6 years. By providing resources for new teams, 2556 has helped build two FRC teams in the 2014/2015 season, and we aid two new teams out of county this season. In May of 2016, we were approved to break ground on a 6000 sq ft warehouse, which we will use as a central location and practice facility for FRC teams across county lines. The warehouse is to be completed in May of 2017.

Forming other FIRST teams (including Jr.FLL, FLL, and FTC)

Orbit In the first four years of ECRA, FLL teams will be established in every middle school and elementary school, along with FTC teams in high schools in Okaloosa County. 2556 also created ORBIT, an elementary and middle school EV3 competition, with the goal of encouraging middle schools to create FIRST teams in a FLL-style competition. By creating and implementing EV3 and robotics lesson plans in schools, 2556 has aided 6 Title-1 elementary schools create FLL Jr. teams.

Assisting other FIRST teams (including Jr.FLL, FLL, and FTC)

Team 2556 places major emphasis on mentoring and assisting FLL teams--the foundation of FIRST; therefore, we guide every FLL event in the county. We demonstrate our competition robots at each event, and encourage kids to pursue their STEM interests. ECRA creates a foundation of FLL teams in every middle school, making FIRST more accessible and inspiring kids to continue participating in FIRST competitions after middle school.

Mentoring younger or less experienced FIRST teams

Earth Day 2556 has spent over 180 hours mentoring FIRST teams this season. At FLL events, 2556 provides on-site programming and mechanical assistance, and our kickoff provided an opportunity for 9 teams to learn mechanical, programming, and electrical skills that will help them throughout their build season. We are currently mentoring two out-of-county rookie FRC teams, 6491 & 6198 through emails, skype, and personal visits. Locally, we are also mentoring FRC teams 5616 & 5722, as well as FTC 10179.

Latest activity in the community:


  • Kickoff
  • Davidson Qualifier 1/28/17
  • Rubber Band Car


  • Orbit 4/2/16
  • STEM Presentation 4/15/16
  • Bluewater Elementary 4/15/16
  • Spring Fling 4/16/16
  • Earth Day 4/22/16
  • Demo Day at ECSC 4/24/16
  • Eglin Elementary 5/3/16
  • First Baptist Church 5/9/16
  • Walton County BCC 5/10/16
  • Baseball Camp
  • Davidson FLL Camp
  • Homecoming 9/18/16
  • Seth Mentoring Sept-Nov/16
  • Davidson Practice 11/5/16
  • Christmas Parade 12/3/16
  • Shoal River FLL Qualifier 12/10/16