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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Federated Giving Programs, Philanthropy, Youth Development

Mission: BEST is a non-profit, volunteer organization whose mission is to inspire students to pursue careers in engineering, science, technology, and math through participation in a sports-like, science- and engineering-based robotics competition.

Programs: The program involves having middle and high school students design, build, then demonstrate a robotic machine to play a sports-like "game". Engineers from local industry act as mentors to guide the students in the engineering process, teaming and other business principles. The contest is designed to simulate a real-world business and engineering environment. The contest simulates:
1) Time to Market - through a limited time period (only 6 weeks);
2) Design to Cost - by providing a "kit" of raw materials from which the robot must be designed. No other parts are allowed; 
3) Design to Function - by requiring teams to build a robot that meets design restrictions such as size/weight and still performs specific tasks in the game to earn points. Students learn other aspects of product development such as advertising, fund raising, technical writing, business operations, teamwork and leadership, etc. There are no entry fees and all materials are provided for the participating schools. There are many hubs (local contest sites) throughout the United States. Each hub sets it's own budget, performs it's own fundraising and executes the local competition.  All hubs use the same game, kit materials and time-frame for the contest, as defined and controlled by BEST Robotics, Inc.  The budget for a typical hub is approximately $1200 per team.  Hubs host from 8 to 32 teams.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have volunteered as a judge of presentations and competition awards for elegance and robustness. It has been a pleasure working with the Best organizers and seeing the excitement from the students as they perform. I have volunteered for other non-profit organizations and BEST is by far the most well run and organized program.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been a judge for the Best robotics competition in North Texas, sponsored by the University of North Texas. I have never seen anything like it before, it is far beyond high school science fairs. The students are creative, enthusiastic, and truly involved. I observed students testing, repairing, and retesting malfunctioning robots, moments before competition, all without adult help or even hints. The students knew their creations inside and out and were proud of their products. I also looked over their project logs containing preliminary designs, prototypes, and various refinements.

This is the best student program I've ever seen for getting high school students interested in technical and engineering careers.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

I have worked with BEST locally first as a faculty volunteer, then as a team mentor, and now as an assistant director for a local competition. It is amazing what middle and high school teams can do in a six weeks with very limited resources. It has stimulated interest in the engineering and mathematical sciences and encouraged participants to consider pursuing similar degrees at the next level of their education. It is a great organization.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

This has been one of the most influencial programs for our students! We had 25% of our school population participate in the program! Students learned things from all aspects of the cirriculum and alot of real-world experience was included! On top of that, it was FUN!!! I have to say alot of hours went in to it as well. I think because of this, our students took even more pride in their work. I am extremely proud of our team!!!! Regionals in our first year!!!! GO PRIDE TECHNOLOGY!!!!!!

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

BEST Robotics has truly been a gift from God for so many students. I have been working with the program for about 3yrs. TThe program affords students to enhance their knowlegde in Science, Engineering, Technology, Math and even their writing and communication skills will having fun. This year with a Workforce grant in Alabama, we have afforded students in 23 of the poorest and highest unemployment rates counties in the State an opportunity to participate in BEST. The participation and enthusiasm is overwhelming. BEST is truly the BEST!

Review from Guidestar

Within REACH

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

REACH has been involved with the BEST competition for three years now. The students have gone from looking at the provided building materials and thinking “what do we do with all this stuff” to qualifying for the National competition. It‘s a testament on how well this program is put together and organized. From the challenging Kickoff day, proceeding through the engineering process, refining the product (robot) to finally competing on THE day, it is amazing to see how much is learned through the process.

However, I have to say, it’s the BEST competition that really gets my juices flowing. The students take theoretical knowledge they have learned throughout the school year and apply it to solve a specific problem. As a business leader in the community, I believe it’s these real life situations that drive home the desire to learn more STEM subjects in greater detail. What better way to learn the business world than having to market your own product in front of judges, develop a display to promote the BEST program and your product, engineer, design and build the robot and positively support one another including your competition.

Finally, experiencing the life lesson of getting along with team members and working together to solve technical and social problems is a wonderful experience. My hat goes off to this great program.

Review from Guidestar