As a result of their hard work, the high school’s robotics teams have earned the right to compete in several competitions this year. Three teams battled for their chance to compete in the Long Island/NYC Championship Tournament and advanced further than any other team in the school’s history.

The senior team, Locust Valley Artificial Intelligence, and the juniors team, 404 Robot Not Found, led the way in organizing the season and coming up with strategies that would give them the most success. In the end, The Falcon Bots, a mixed team of underclassmen saw the most success and advanced to the Eastern US Regional Championship.

The first test of engineering came at the Francis Lewis High School qualifier in January. The Falcon Bots found themselves in sixth place and were chosen to compete in the semifinals. The students battled hard but were ultimately defeated in the finals. Along with a Finalist Award, the team was presented with the Rockwell Collins Innovate Award for the creative design and functionality of their robotic arm. Locust Valley Artificial Intelligence received the Motivate Award for reaching out and inspiring younger students by assisting them in the Junior FIRST Lego League.

The second qualifier was held at Syosset High School, also in January. LVAI competed as allies with the Falcon Bots but saw defeat in the finals. The seniors team was presented with the Think Award for their engineering notebook, which showed the design process and the team’s journey throughout the year, while both they and the Falcon Bots received a Finalist Award.

“This team is a great mix of students. Their ability to work collaboratively is a key skill that not only contributed to them winning an award, but will serve them well in their future endeavors,” said Robotics Advisor Alan Stella.

The final qualifier before the championships was held during the first week of February. The Falcon Bots battled their way to second place, earned a spot in the finals and won. The team was presented with the Winning Alliance Award and was invited to compete at the Long Island/NYC Championship Tournament during the last weekend in February, where they made it to the finals but lost in the final match. However, the season continues, as the team has been invited to compete in the regional championship in Scranton, Pennsylvania, on March 20.

Science curriculum leader Ken Packert said the success of the Robotic team speaks volumes about the program’s impact on students. “It’s extremely rewarding to see the continued growth of our robotics program in Locust Valley. Students are finding success at every level and are gaining exposure to STEM not only in the classroom but as an extension in our nationally recognized award wining clubs.”

Congratulations on a successful season and good luck at the regionals!