What is the Global Innovation Award?

The FIRST LEGO League Global Innovation Award is designed to showcase the real-world, innovative solutions that FIRST LEGO League teams create as a result of their Innovation Project.

FIRST LEGO League trains kids to think like innovators. The Award encourages and assists teams in developing solutions to real-world problems that demonstrate originality and have the potential to add significant value to the world.

For many teams, the innovative solutions created through their FIRST LEGO League Project have led to some amazing opportunities, like receiving local and national media attention, meeting government leaders, and seeing their invention be brought to market. As a Coach, you might be wanting to provide an additional layer of engagement for a student that has that “ah-ha” moment seeing their idea come to life, you want your team to continue working after your Qualifier even if you don’t advance to Regionals, or perhaps your students need additional motivation to make their Project innovative (see the prizes below!).

Renaissance Jax wants this to be an additional opportunity for teams to engage with FIRST at a deeper level in our Region. We have some amazing Projects that deserve to be highlighted and cultivated!

Save the date! The 10th annual Global Innovation Award will be held June 7-9, 2020 at Disney's Contemporary Resort and World Showcase Pavilion, Epcot.

How does Northeast Florida nominate a team?

**NEW THIS YEAR** At each of our Qualifiers, Project Judges select a single team as the event Candidate for being a Renaissance Jax Northeast Florida Region Nominee. Criteria for selection are the Innovative Solution rows on the Project Rubric.

Whether a team receives a bid to Regionals or not does not affect the possibility of receiving Candidate status.

Once a team is determined a Candidate...
Each Candidate will need to prepare and submit to Renaissance Jax (fllprojectjudge@rjax.org) a written synopsis of their Project Solution.

Within three weeks following their Qualifier, each of these candidate teams is expected to write a proposal using the GIA submittal guidelines provided at the bottom of this email and to the team during the Award Ceremony of their Qualifier. Teams are encouraged to get their write-ups reviewed by professionals before being submitted.

Note: Teams attending the last Qualifiers on February 15 will have a short turnaround time with a due date of February 21, 2020. If you’re a team that feels you may receive this nomination, we recommend you work on a proposal prior to your Qualifier. Our nomination is due to FIRST on March 9, which is prompting such a tight turnaround and forcing deliberations to take place prior to our Regional Championship on February 29.

How does Renaissance Jax choose the Northeast Florida nominee that advances to submit to FIRST?
A Renaissance Jax GIA Committee, comprised of the Regional Judge Advisor, the Partners, and a small panel of selective Judges will review the proposals, using the Global Innovation Award criteria, including the GIA Rubric.

The Renaissance Jax GIA Committee will select the Northeast Florida Nominee and 2 alternates. Renaissance Jax will notify both FIRST LEGO League GIA Headquarters and the Nominee / alternates.

If you are chosen as the Region Nominee, you will submit your Project Innovative Solution synopsis and supplemental materials to FIRST in March.

How does FIRST choose the cohort of 20 teams?
FIRST asks experts in engineering, manufacturing, and this year’s Challenge theme to judge submissions. The judges review every submission. This judging process is managed both by FIRST staff and an experienced FIRST LEGO League Judge Advisor.

The Semi-Finalists (top 20 teams selected by the judges) will be notified in late-April. These teams will send at least 2 team member representatives and 1 adult coach per 5 team members to meet with the judges at the event in June.

Why this new process in selecting our GIA Nominee?
As our Region continues to grow, Renaissance Jax recognized that not all innovative project solutions make it to the Regional Championship.

By nominating one team from each Qualifier, we hope to elevate teams across the Northeast Florida Region so that more ideas may be heard and that we continue to promote student, team and coach growth and opportunities.

It is also our hope that we can assist teams submit high quality proposals to FIRST, thus increasing the chances of a team in our Region being chosen as one of the 20 teams.

What prizes can a team expect if chosen to be one of the 20-team cohort chosen by FIRST?
The twenty (20) Semi-Finalist teams will participate in a 2-day celebratory event which will include advice and access to resources relevant to pursuing their Project Innovative Solution and building life- long innovative thinking skills, such as marketing, intellectual property, presentation literacy, and more.

The winner will receive a cash prize of USD $20,000. The two (2) runners-up will each receive a cash prize of USD $5,000. The teams must agree to use the prize money to extend the team’s invention and/or to support team activities related to FIRST programs.

Thanks to our Partner in Innovation, LEGO Education, each team member of the three (3) Finalist teams will receive a new LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Education EV3 robot set.

The 2019 INTO ORBIT Global Innovation Award was held June 30 - July 2, 2019 in San Jose, CA, USA. 20 teams from around the world showcased their innovative FIRST LEGO League Project solutions. These solutions were created to improve long-duration space travel.


We encourage teams to contact us with any questions, including Judging or Robot Game clarifications. Renaissance Jax staff and the Regional Planning Team are responsible for managing all aspects of the FIRST LEGO League Program in the Northeast Florida Region and we're happy to help!

Renaissance Jax builds and retains talented, creative young people in Northeast Florida to inspire and retool human ingenuity through opportunities involving FIRST Robotics, STEM education, and mentor-driven experiences.

As an official LEGO League Program Delivery Partner for FIRST, we help Northeast Florida kids and teenagers explore their love for engineering and technology in a fun, educational environment that promotes academic and career achievement.