How to Register

Registration has two main steps.  If you would like more information on League Play, please see the details further below and links in the top menu.

  1. First, two adult mentors will register their team with FIRST at firstinspires.org, whether you are a rookie or returning team. FIRST will ask for a $275 annual fee plus needs to ensure your two great adult mentors pass Youth Protection, which will need to be renewed every three years.
  2. After you have signed up for FIRST for the season, and if you are new and have connected with the Region at community@firsttechsocal.org, you’ll be assigned a League and will receive an email with directions on how to register for your Event Season. Up to 4 League Meets and 1 InterLeague Tournament usually costs $300, for up to 25 match plays with a live audience! But, due to COVID-19, the season fee has been reduced to $50. If you wish to be changed from your 1st assigned league, you will have the opportunity to request to be switched to a different league but only one time ahead of the first League Meet. Any registration questions can be sent to registration@firsttechsocal.org.  You must be registered to retain your League spot.

Broader Information for new teams and rookies:

If this is your first season competing, welcome to our group! Your first FIRST Tech Challenge robotics season can be particularly exciting and overwhelming but there are many resources available to make the experience worthwhile.

Tournament Structure: League Play

The LA/SoCal region is growing! In order to give all teams ample opportunities to compete with their robots, we moved to a League model for tournaments in 2016.

Leagues are communities of no more than 16 teams that are located (hopefully) geographically close. The League plays 4 Meets, with 5 matches in each half-day Meet. Meets run approximately 2 weeks apart on either Saturdays or Sundays determined by the host.

These Meet Events run 3-4 hours. This is game play only, with no judging. From all the Meets 1-3 that a given team competes in, its top 10 scores out of the 15 standard matches will carry forward to combine with its qualifying round scores in its Inter-League Tournament. This excludes scores from the no-score Meet 0, the first Meet event, which serves as a practice event for teams and volunteers to get acquainted with each other and the system before points start to accumulate.

If you are a new team, you will receive an email from us once you register with FIRST assigning you to a SoCal/LA League. We will do our best to place you close to your city, but please know there are limited leagues and spots so you may need to drive. All League events are Saturdays or Sundays to avoid weeknight traffic and impacts to afterschool activities and homework.

League Assignments:  The drafts of the Leagues can be found at http://www.firsttechsocal.org/league-assignments/. The team mentor may request a change in League location up to one time before Leagues start by contacting registration@firsttechsocal.org. Questions overall can go to community@firsttechsocal.org. Note: some Leagues are already full at 16 teams for the season.

The single payment to compete in the League System in the LA/SoCal Region usually is $300. At this time, due to COVID-19, the season fee is $50. Note, this is a separate fee from the FIRST registration fee that is paid directly to FIRST. This event registration fee covers up to four League meets (Meets 0-3) and one Interleague Tournament (ILT). Your team is not required to attend all events but it is strongly encouraged to do so.

League/ILT Event Registration: Each team must register and pay to retain their League placement in order to play.  Mentors from returning teams receive an email inviting them to register and the link to do so. New teams should reach out to registration@firsttechsocal.org for those details. Payment can be by credit card via PayPal, check, or full PO (not just the number).

IMPORTANT: The League Play system operates under a community model and teams are expected to contribute to its success. Therefore, each team is required to submit at least one volunteer per League meet and two for the ILT. Failure to fulfill team commitment could lead to negative consequences for your team.

Tentative Season Timeline (subject to change):

September 13 LAFTC Virtual Kickoff and Registration Opens
November & December   (exact dates TBD) Remote Scrimmage #1, #2    (for teams who are back in operation)
December 5 Kickoff Reboot    (Refresher for teams that waited to register or missed KO)
January & February  (exact dates TBD) Remote Scrimmage #3, #4    (for teams who are back in operation)
January 20 Last day to register and pay for your Qualifier
March 6, 14, 21, 27 Qualifying Tournaments – planned for remote events
   7 day window prior to QT day to submit scores
   Judging and awards on QT day
   May add one more QT week in April depending on registration
April 17 (Saturday) Championship – planning for a remote event
July (exact date TBD) Worlds – planning for an in-person event in Houston

Where You Can Get Information/Help

First off (slight pun intended), sign up for our weekly newsletter, Robot Tuesday! We feature updates from the Regional Planning Committee, fellow teams/mentors, and different supporting companies and organizations. It is an excellent source for information and resources. It is open to anyone who is interested in keeping up with our region and we strongly recommend that mentors share information with student team members and families.

Robot Tuesday Signups:  To keep you up to date, sign up here for Robot Tuesday.

We also have an active LA FIRST Tech Challenge Facebook page featuring even more updates and photos from events:https://www.facebook.com/Los.Angeles.FIRST.Tech.Challenge

We have an active Mentor Facebook Group for all mentors to share stories, resources, and ideas. Coaches and mentors, please email community@firsttechsocal.org for an invitation.

Connections:

Name email Role
LA/SoCal Planning Committee community@firsttechsocal.org General questions and inquiries; a good starting point for everything
Arabian Prince President, NextCareers
Theresa Klemme TFKlemme@gmail.com Affiliate Partner, Event Manager;
Patrick Brophy pjbrophy@tpaa.org Affiliate Partner, Event Manager, Co-Lead Volunteer Coordinator
Brian Johnson accounting@firsttechsocal.org Treasurer
Eddie Shek eddie_shek@yahoo.com Robot Tuesday Author
Amanda Sullivan asullivan855@gmail.com Event Manager, Head Scorekeeper
Bob Meinhard bmeinhard@outlook.com Regional Judge Advisor,  Mentor Resources
Erin Rehard webmaster@firsttechsocal.org Regional Website
Cindy Chung-Prestwood cindyprestwood@gmail.com Co-Lead Volunteer Coordinator
Erin Rehard registration@firsttechsocal.org Head Registration

Please know that if you have any questions or concerns, we are here to support you and your students throughout all your endeavors. Feel free to reach out at any time. We wish you the best of luck in these upcoming months and look forward to meeting you soon!

Best,

LA/SoCal FIRST Tech Challenge Planning Committee