Ends on February 15, 2019

Funding for a limited number of new and returning FIRST® teams is available through John Deere FIRST grants as part of the John Deere Inspire, global youth STEM program.  Please submit one application per team you wish to be considered for a grant. Applications with multiple team numbers will only be considered for one grant.  Teams that apply and receive a rookie grant are expected to participate and utilize the grant supported materials for two years or more.

If your U.S. based team was supported by John Deere (team grant, Dollars for Doers grants, or team mentor or coach) for the 2017 - 2018 season, please submit a John Deere post season survey using this link BEFORE fillling out this new grant application for the 2018 - 2019 FIRST season.

The grants are available for participants within a 50 mile radius (driving distance) of 17 U.S John Deere home communities covering 13 states for all four FIRST programs.  Additionally, teams can apply for a grant in any U.S. location if they have a John Deere employee committed to actively supporting their team in person regardless of location.


FIRST® LEGO League Junior (FLLJR) Deadline:  February 15, 2019

FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) Deadline:  Passed

FIRST® Tech Challenge (FTC) Deadline: Passed

FIRST® Robotic Competition (FRC) Deadline:  November 9, 2018


Current US John Deere Inspire Home Communities

  • California - Torrance (Must have John Deere confirmed mentor to apply)
  • Georgia - Augusta   
  • Illinois - Champaign & Quad Cities
  • Iowa - Des Moines, Dubuque, Paton, Ottumwa, Quad Cities, & Waterloo
  • Kansas - Coffeyville  
  • Louisiana - Thibodaux 
  • Missouri - Springfield
  • North Carolina - Raleigh-Durham  
  • North Dakota - Fargo & Valley City
  • Tennessee - Greeneville 
  • Wisconsin - Horicon


John Deere currently provides FIRST team grant support in Brazil, Canada, India, Mexico and Russia using a separate grant process.

  • Teams must be associated with a school or 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations (4-H, Girl Scouts, Boys & Girls Clubs, etc.) in order to be eligible.
  • Teams must apply and get approval for the John Deere / FIRST grant prior to completing (paying for) registration for the 2018-2019 FIRST season. You can register with FIRST, but should not pay for your registration as you may potentially forfeit your grant.  

Key criteria used for selecting and prioritizing grant requests 

  • John Deere Mentor or Coach (John Deere dealership employees are not eligible at this time)
  • Need or criticality of team grant
  • Low income students as measured by % of free and reduced lunch program
  • Number of underrepresented students including minorities and/or females
  • First-time FIRST participants
  • Teams that support community outreach including partnering with John Deere


Grant funding levels will vary for new and returning teams and will cover costs normally paid to FIRST by teams such as for registration, robot kits or parts, and field setup kits. Teams will be notified of their grant status within 3 weeks of submission. Please note: it will take additional time for an approved grant to appear on the team's account. For teams that accept a John Deere grant, they agree to the following requirements, by program.


Accepted FLL JR Teams

  • Teams will consist of 3-6 active members age 6-10 as of January 1, 2018.
  • Teams will meet at least weekly for at least one hour per week for 6-8 weeks 
  • Teams will showcase their work at at least one FLL JR Event/Expo (must be official FIRST Event)
  • The coach will be responsible for managing the team and for participating in a post-season evaluation.
  • Display the logo provided by John Deere on team shirt, website and/or team materials.


Accepted FLL Teams

  • Teams will consist of 5-10 active members age 9-14 as of January 1, 2018.
  • Teams will meet at least weekly for at least two hours throughout the season.
  • Coaches will participate in a training session for coaches if available and will abide by the guidelines in the FLL Coach's Handbook. http://www.firstinspires.org/resource-library/fll/coaches-handbook 
  • The teams will participate in at least one tournament, which may be a regional or championship event.
  • The coach will be responsible for managing the team and for participating in a post-season evaluation.
  • Display the logo provided by John Deere on the team pit, website and shirts.


Accepted FTC Teams

  • Teams will consist of 5-15 active members between the ages 12-18 as of January 1, 2018.
  • The team will meet at least weekly for at least two hours throughout the season.
  • Coaches will participate in a training session for coaches if available.
  • The teams will participate in at least one tournament, which may be a regional or championship event.
  • The coach will be responsible for managing the team and for participating in a post-season evaluation.
  • Display the logo provided by John Deere on the team robot, pit, website and shirts.

Returning Teams

  • Participate in at least 3 community outreach activities throughout the year


Accepted FRC Teams

  • Have one or more John Deere employees committed to actively (40 hours or more during the season) support the team as a mentor in person.  FRC team's best opporunity for a John Deere grant is if you already have a John Deere employee mentor confirmed before applying for grant.  Otherwise, you can apply and John Deere will try and lined up a mentor.
  • FRC Teams that are requesting a grant from John Deere for the first time will be requested to give a brief presentation to the John Deere Inspire team in their community as part of the approval process.
  • Teams will consist of 10 or more active members for rookie teams and 15 for returning teams, ages 14-18 as of January 1, 2018.
  • Mentors will participate in a training session for mentors if available.
  • The teams will participate in at least one regional event.
  • The mentor will be responsible for managing the team and for participating in a post-season evaluation.
  • Display the logo provided by John Deere on the team robot, pit, website and shirts.

Returning Teams

  • Participate in at least 3 community outreach activities throughout the year.
  • Apply for either the Entrepreneurship or Chairman's Award at a regional event.


If you have questions regarding your team's account or registration at FIRST, please contact Operations at (800) 871-8326 or e-mail one of the following:

firstlegoleaguejr@firstinspires.org

firstlegoleague@firstinspires.org

firsttechchallenge@firstinspires.org

firstroboticscompittion@firstinspires.org