Meet the Pandas:

The Tuxedo Pandas are based in Christiansburg and Blacksburg, Virginia. We are Arnav, Jack, Defne, Chloe, Ayca, Jackie, and Hanna, students 7th to 11th grade. We meet regularly to build robots and promote STEM throughout the New River Valley. We practice in a space generously provided by The Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, 2200 Kraft Drive, Suite 1450, Blacksburg.

For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) Tech Challenge is a global robotics program for middle and high school students. Experience the power, excitement and fun of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) with hands-on, minds-on activities - all with robots!

Tuxedo Pandas are a program of the New River Robotics Association, an approved non-profit 501(c)(3) organization chartered to promote STEM through the use of robotics and engineering outreach in the New River Valley of Virginia. Our first FTC competition was the 2011 "Bowled Over" event. Many of our members have competed in FIRST Lego League for a few years and enjoy the advanced opportunities offered by this intermediate level of robotics. Our coaches are volunteers with engineering backgrounds and experience in Boy Scouts, Youth Sports, and Teaching. We think FIRST is an awesome concept: truly a sport for the mind, where we celebrate our geekness and get excited about science, technology, engineering and math!

Current Panda Projects:

The FIRST Sponsors Campaign: To engage, motivate and inspire tomorrow's leaders, Start a Team today! We have FLL Jr. WeDo 2 kits available for new teams!

Pandas-for-a-Day Program: Check out our Calendar, you are welcome to join us and work on our special projects, during our regular meeting (look for "Pandas-for-a-day").

FIRST Lego League tournament: The Pandas put on the Roanoke/Blacksburg FLL tournament, now in our 5th year! We're delighted to welcome several new Roanoke-based FLL teams to this year's tournament and we're available to help anyone who'd like anything from funding ideas to tips on teamwork!

FIRST Global: mentoring teams in other nations to prepare for a new, Olympic-style robotics competition.