Do I need experience to be a volunteer?
No! You just need to come with a positive attitude and a willingness to work hard to make the kids experience awesome! If there are any volunteer roles that require additional knowledge, training will be provided.
Can I sign up for more than one volunteering event?
Yes! When you log into your FIRST Inspires Volunteer account, you can search for events based on program, date, and location.
You are welcome to sign up for as many events as you wish to volunteer for.
Below are steps for creating an account and signing up!
Click HERE for steps to sign up!
Do volunteer events happen throughout the year?
No, FIRST® Washington events typically run between the months of October through April (during the school year). Depending on the program you are volunteering for will determine when you’ll participate.
What is the age requirement to volunteer with FIRST Washington?
It is dependent on the volunteer role. Here are some of the roles:
Volunteer Role What You Do? How Old Do I Need To Be? Judges Help evaluate and give feedback to teams 21 or older Referees Help the students play their game safely and fairly 21 or older Event Volunteers Help queue teams, field reset, greeters 18 or older
Will I have to get a background check to become a volunteer?
Yes. To ensure the safety of our students, FIRST® Washington requires all volunteers to complete a background check before attending events. Volunteers are not responsible for any costs or fees associated with background checks, but you do have the option to donate those costs back to the organization.
Check out this easy guide to submitting your Youth Protection Program background check!
How much time am I committing when volunteering?
It depends on the volunteer role you’ve signed up for. Here are some examples (these are approximate times, some of the times might change based on need and venue):
Volunteer Role How Much Time Am I Committing To? Judges 2 days Referees 2 days Event Volunteers 1 Day (typically 7am – 5pm)
What is the time commitment for FIRST® Robotics Competition coaches, volunteers, and team members?
In general, as a coach, volunteer, or team member you should be meeting with your team at least several times per week during the build and competition season (January – April), many teams meet on weekends if necessary. Many mature teams also meet throughout the school year, and some compete in off-season events during the summer. You, your family, and your available free time can decide together how much time you can devote to the program. Like any sport or club, the time you invest in helping your team will add to your team’s success.
What is the time commitment for FIRST® Tech Challenge coaches, volunteers, and team members?
In general, as a coach, volunteer, or team member you should meet with your team at least once per week during the build and competition season (September – April). Many mature teams also meet throughout the school year, and some compete in off-season events during the summer. You and your family can decide together how much time you can devote to the program. Like any sport or club, the time you invest in helping your team will add to your team’s success.
I can’t find a team near me. Can I start one?
Absolutely, the easiest way to join a FIRST® Tech Challenge program is to start your own team. Ask your principal if your school has a team; if not, encourage your principal to identify a teacher who would be willing to start a team with your help as a team volunteer. Please let your principal know that FIRST® is a collaborative partnership with private industry professionals and educators to inspire young people towards STEM.
If a school-based team is not a possibility, you may find another youth-focused organization that can help. Scouts, 4-H and other clubs may also support FIRST® teams.
What is the time commitment for FIRST® LEGO® League Explore coaches, volunteers, and team members?
In general, as a coach, volunteer, or team member you should meet with your team one to two times per week during the build and Festival season from August through May. Like any sport or club, the time you invest in helping your team will add to your team’s success.
What should I wear to events as a volunteer?
Something comfortable! FIRST® Washington will provide you with a Volunteer t-shirt, but make sure you wear comfortable shoes – you’ll be standing/walking a lot!
Who can mentor a FIRST® Robotics Competition team?
Mentors are individuals from all backgrounds and disciplines who work with students to share their knowledge and guide them through the season. Many Mentors contribute on a weekly basis during the program season, or support the team with subject matter expertise on an as needed basis. Teams may have additional or more specialized roles or combine roles as needed.
Who can mentor a FIRST® Tech Challenge team?
Mentors are individuals from all backgrounds and disciplines who work with students to share their knowledge and guide them through the season. Many mentors contribute on a weekly basis during the program season or support the team with subject matter expertise on an as-needed basis. Teams may have additional or more specialized roles or combine roles as needed.
Why Volunteer with FIRST Washington?
FIRST Washington offers the most comprehensive STEM and career connected learning in the state and serves students between 6-18 years old. We need volunteers from all backgrounds and abilities to build an inclusive and welcoming learning community. Help us support the STEM innovators of the future!
Sign Up to Volunteer!
Upcoming Events: All Programs
FRC Schedule (2)
Ready to volunteer? Follow these steps to sign up!
Event Volunteers are essential to the success of our students. They uphold FIRST Washington Core Values: Discovery, Inclusion, Innovation, Impact, Teamwork and Fun!
There are many fun roles to new and veteran volunteers to fill at events! Most require no STEM background, just a passion for helping kids learn!
- Judges – Help evaluate and give feedback to teams (most needed role, no STEM background required!)
- Referees – Help the students play the game safely and fairly
- Field Crews – Help with setup, run, and tear down of fields and A/V equipment
Coaching or Mentoring:
Teams rely on mentors to assist and educate the team with a range of different tasks.
Skills needed by teams include:
- Marketing and fundraising
- Graphic design and communications
- Team organization and project and financial management
- Software and hardware engineering
Each of our programs have varying time commitments, but each is extremely rewarding. No previous experience is required to mentor a team.
Most of our team activities run from September through April. Coaches/Mentors can arrange with their team when and how they are able to contribute. Working directly with a group of students is likely the most rewarding experience you will have.
Subscribe to our Volunteer Opportunity Email List to stay in the loop regarding upcoming opportunities!
- Mara Kealey, Volunteer Success & Engagement Manager