The time is ripe for entering your team’s innovative solution into the running for the FLL® Global Innovation Award, presented by XPRIZE.

But if you and your team are not sure about entering, we recommend you go ahead and create an account now. You will have until 2 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Feb. 10, to complete your entry.

For the first time ever, 20 Semi-Finalist teams will be invited to FIRST® Championship in St. Louis, MO, USA, this April to present to judges. Of those, three Finalist teams will travel in June to Washington, D.C., USA, where a winning team will be named. Each member of all three Finalist teams will take home a LEGO® MINDSTORMS® EV3 set. Finalist teams will win $5,000 per team to use in taking their solution to the next level or to continue in FIRST ® programming. The winning team will take home $20,000 USD.

We think of it as a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but do not take our word for it. We asked last year’s winning team, the Brain Busters, to share their thoughts on why teams should enter. The Brain Busters, a first-year team from Massachusetts, USA, traveled to Washington, D.C., in June, where they met FIRST founder and inventor Dean Kamen, talk show host Montel Williams and patent examiners from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. They also took part in a special Innovation Ambassadors event at the U.S. State Department.

Brain Busters and their trophies

They all agreed — if you have already created an innovative solution, you have done the hard work already.

Ryan Bendremer:

“You’ve already done all the work to come up with a great idea. Why not share it with everyone?”

“Great ideas don’t help anyone when they are hidden in your notebook. Help the world and maybe you’ll win $20,000.”

“It’s a chance to help your team take their idea further and you may get a patent or have the money to improve your idea, so why not? It doesn’t cost money to enter, so there is no downside, only a potential win for your team, your idea and a chance to help others or change the world.”

Dillon Natale:

“The process of working with a team on a project that could help people is a lot of fun!”

BBmontel

Sam Randa: 

“You should enter your idea because you have the opportunity to further the development of your idea and see it become a reality.”

Nate Randa:

“Why not?”

“You have the chance to see your idea help change the world.”

Zach Szeto:

“It’s a great way to share your ideas with more people from around the world.”

“It allows children to take their ideas further. It’s an opportunity to learn about the patent process and how the U.S. government works.”

Learn more at fllinnovation.firstlegoleague.org.