I think its FIRST’s attempts to make sure their program has a balance between the focus of a team initiatives to spread STEM and cultivate STEM skills on their team. At the end of the day its FIRST’s highest award and they set the criteria. As someone who has been on three teams who have received the Chairman’s award at regional or district competition, I think this is a good move by FIRST.
Even though this can be upsetting to see the shift, bear in mind these efforts aren’t lost in the grand scheme of things. Inspiration is still a powerful thing for an FRC team to promote in their community. Will there be efforts that won’t directly impact the immediate criteria of the Chairman’s Award moving forward? Yes. Should teams keep doing them. YES!
At the end of the day it is FIRST’s criteria to set for teams and it falls in line with the focuses in recent years to push their brand and unify their programs.