I participated in this program in 1996-1997, in Manchester, NH. Since the program was founded by Dean Kamen (of Segway fame) - and his offices were based in Manchester - the program was pretty big there.
At the time, my team was sponsored by PSNH (electric co.) - as a result, I learned a lot about engineering, and programming.
I really see it as a major influence in my decision to ultimately go to engineering school.
While it looks like the team now has a new sponsor ( http://powerknights.com/ ) - and they no longer go to EPCOT for national competitions, like they once did - it is great to see that this program is still active, and vibrant, since it really offers so much more than a "battlebot" type program.
Kudos to all the sponsors, and mentors out there.