LI FIRST® Robotics Competition Kicks Off to a Great Start

Copiague High School Robotics Team Receives Kit of Parts

Copiague High School students attended this year’s kickoff event for the 2020 FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition, sponsored by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) also known as FIRST Long Island, and hosted by LIU Post. They gathered with more than 40 participating high schools on January 4 at the LIU Post Tilles Center for presentations and a simulcast broadcast from New Hampshire unveiling this year’s game. After the presentations and broadcast, each team received a kit of parts, which they will use along with other materials to build a 120-pound robot. The teams will have six weeks to construct the robot and prepare for the upcoming competition to be held on March 22-28 at Hofstra University.

Members of the Copiague High School robotics team are pictured displaying the contents of the kit of parts.

For more information about SBPLI and the annual FIRST Robotics Competition, visit http://www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

LI FIRST® Robotics Competition Kicks Off to a Great Start

Carle Place High School Robotics Team Receives Kit of Parts

Carle Place High School students attended this year’s kickoff event for the 2020 FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition, sponsored by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) also known as FIRST Long Island, and hosted by LIU Post. They gathered with more than 40 participating high schools on January 4 at the LIU Post Tilles Center for presentations and a simulcast broadcast from New Hampshire unveiling this year’s game. After the presentations and broadcast, each team received a kit of parts, which they will use along with other materials to build a 120-pound robot. The teams will have six weeks to construct the robot and prepare for the upcoming competition to be held on March 22-28 at Hofstra University.

Members of the Carle Place High School robotics team are pictured displaying the contents of the kit of parts.

For more information about SBPLI and the annual FIRST Robotics Competition, visit http://www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

LI FIRST® Robotics Competition Kicks Off to a Great Start

Bay Shore High School Robotics Team Receives Kit of Parts

Bay Shore High School students attended this year’s kickoff event for the 2020 FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition, sponsored by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) also known as FIRST Long Island, and hosted by LIU Post. They gathered with more than 40 participating high schools on January 4 at the LIU Post Tilles Center for presentations and a simulcast broadcast from New Hampshire unveiling this year’s game. After the presentations and broadcast, each team received a kit of parts, which they will use along with other materials to build a 120-pound robot. The teams will have six weeks to construct the robot and prepare for the upcoming competition to be held on March 22-28 at Hofstra University.

Members of the Bay Shore High School robotics team are pictured displaying the contents of the kit of parts.

For more information about SBPLI and the annual FIRST Robotics Competition, visit http://www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

“INFINITE RECHARGE(SM)” Is Unveiled as 2020 FIRST® Robotics Competition Challenge during SBPLI-FIRST Long Island’s Regional Kick-Off

LIU Post Tilles Center Hosted 47 Local FIRST Robotics Teams,
Mentors and Advisors, and their Families, at the Annual Event

[Brookville, New York] — The Tilles Center at LIU Post was abuzz with anticipation on January 4 as students, educators and families from across Long Island joined together for the unveiling of the 2020 FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition challenge, “INFINITE RECHARGESM”.

INFINITE RECHARGE is part of the 2020 FIRST season, FIRST RISE, powered by Star Wars: Force for Change. FIRST has teamed up with Lucasfilm and parent company Disney as part of the Star Wars: Force for Change philanthropic initiative to inspire the next generation of heroes and innovators, creating a place where collaboration and collective wisdom can elevate new ideas and foster growth. FIRST RISE empowers FIRST participants to explore the future of cities and architecture, building communities filled with inspiration, creativity, and — most importantly — hope.

In INFINITE RECHARGE, two alliances work to protect FIRST City from approaching asteroids caused by a distant space skirmish. Each Alliance, along with their trusty droids, race to collect and score Power Cells in order to energize their Shield Generator for maximum protection. To activate stages of the Shield Generator, droids manipulate their Control Panels after scoring a specific number of Power Cells. Near the end of the match, droids race to their Rendezvous Point to get their Shield Generator operational in order to protect the city.

Presented by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island (SBPLI), also known as FIRST Long Island , this annual event served as the official Kick-Off of the 2020 FIRST Long Island season and included a live broadcast of the game reveal direct to the Tilles Center. Hundreds of eager FIRST Long Island students and their parents and coaches listened with rapt attention as FIRST Founder Dean Kamen, and FIRST President Larry Cohen discussed the program as well as the 2020 theme and objective.

“I hope you tackle this season by working together to explore new ideas, to be innovative and inclusive, to strive to make an impact, and — of course — to have fun,” Mr. Cohen said. “I know you’ll rise to the challenge. What you learn in FIRST will make you better prepared for the future and enable you to solve our toughest challenges.”

Before the broadcast, members of SBPLI-FIRST Long Island, sponsors and alumni addressed the crowd, including FIRST Robotics Competition Co-Director Larry Toonkel, Executive Director Bertram Dittmar and Board Member Jeffrey Stern. The presentation also featured New York State Senator James Gaughran, LIU Post Director of Employer Relations Christopher A. Bates, FIRST Alumna Taylor Pedley (formerly with Smithtown High School Team #810) and Matt Boehm, an Engineer with Zebra Technologies, a co-sponsor of the SBPLI Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition.

Immediately following the game reveal broadcast, the visiting teams received pertinent competition details, a first-hand look at the game field, and were handed their build kits, which contain motors, batteries, control system components, construction materials and a mix of additional automation components, along with limited instructions.

“Leading up to the main competition, FIRST Long Island students will work with coaches and mentors to apply concepts of math, science and engineering to build their robots to meet the game’s objectives,” Mr. Toonkel said. “The FIRST Robotics Competition is not just about the design and build of sophisticated robots, our students will also learn important concepts such as teamwork, problem solving and healthy competition. Over the years, FIRST students from Long Island received more than $8 million in scholarships for higher education, in areas of science, technology, engineering, business or math in college. These students also develop maturity, professionalism and teamwork skills that enrich their lives. Our graduates often pursue careers with sponsoring companies, meeting the businesses’ needs for well-rounded, technically skilled employees.”

“This Kick-Off event was a success from all perspectives,” said David Seinfeld, LIU Post Director of School Planning and Partnerships. “The students were inspirational. Their energy for the program, their honor for each other and their respect for the university’s facilities was truly outstanding.” LIU Post offers full scholarships to high school seniors with a 1300+ SAT (28 ACT equivalent) and a 90+ GPA and is encouraging students from Long Island teams participating in the FIRST Robotics Competition to apply.

FIRST isn’t limited to Long Island; nearly 3,900 teams from all over the world came together as a community to share in the excitement of seeing the new game unveiled and will draw on this enthusiasm during the build period. During this time, all FIRST students will be asked to design, build, test and update their robots before the start of the 2020 competition, which includes more than 170 Regional and District events beginning late February. These events measure the effectiveness of each robot’s design and control, the power of teamwork and the determination of participating students not only to win, but to learn and have fun.

To learn more about INFINITE RECHARGE, visit https://www.firstinspires.org/robotics/frc/game-and-season. For more information on SBPLI, visit www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

Jeffrey Stern (right), Board Member, SBPLI, addresses the crowd as Larry Toonkel (left), FIRST Robotics Competition Co-Director, SBPLI, looks on at the FIRST Robotics Competition season kickoff at LIU Post Tilles Center on January 4.
New York State Senator James Gaughran (fourth from right) is joined by Bertram Dittmar (left), Executive Director, SBPLI, members of the Plainview-Old Bethpage High School Robotics Team #353 “POBots” with their coach, Steven Kunz (right), before the start of the FIRST Robotics Competition season kickoff at LIU Post Tilles Center on January 4.
SBPLI-FIRST Long Island students, educators and parents await the announcement of this year’s challenge at the FIRST Robotics Competition season kickoff at LIU Post Tilles Center on January 4.

Local Children Apply Research and Robotics In FIRST® LEGO® League Challenge

-New Season Brings FIRST LEGO League Qualifier Tournament

MASTIC BEACH, NEW YORK – Area children ages 9 to 14 are among the over 320,000 children around the world who have risen to the 2019/2020 FIRST® LEGO® League CITY SHAPERSM Challenge. To successfully complete the Challenge, teams of young people must conduct research and build and program a LEGO® MINDSTORMS® robot to explore one of the most relevant topics facing the world today: sustainability. Teams in more than 100 countries will design and construct practical, sustainable and beautiful buildings and spaces, catering to the diverse needs of their users as part of the season Challenge. Through hands-on experience and working in teams, children have a chance to explore a real-world issue to gain an appreciation for and interest in science and technology, and are empowered to make their innovative solutions a reality.

WHAT: Over 2,000 local children on 200 teams go head to head, putting eight weeks of research, design, and programming to the test in a regional Qualifying Tournament to win honors, recognition and advancement to the Long Island Championship.

WHEN: Saturday, January 11, 2020
8:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

WHERE: William Floyd High School
240 Mastic Beach Road
Mastic Beach, NY

VISUALS: -Amazing, custom-built LEGO® Mindstorms® robots come to life in fast-paced, timed competitions
-Hundreds of students and their coaches putting designs and skills to the test
-Children interacting with local volunteers and meeting with judges to present their research projects related to the CITY SHAPERSM Challenge
-On-site teamwork, troubleshooting, problem solving
-Learning research projects on display
-Spirit and excitement as students, families, friends cheer for their local teams

*Access to and interviews with students, teachers, coaches, mentors and local sponsors available upon request.

MEDIA ADVISORY For January 4, 2020: 2020 FIRST® Robotics Competition Season Kicks Off at LIU Post’s Tilles Center on January 4

Nearly 50 Local Teams Will Gather for Unveiling of INFINITE RECHARGESM Challenge

Who: School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) representatives/volunteers
Sponsors including FESTO Corporation, altice USA, Zebra Technologies and BAE Systems
Students and their coaches/mentors from 47 local FIRST® Robotics Competition teams
Parents of participating FIRST Long Island students
LIU Post representatives

What: The FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics season will kick off this weekend, with support from LIU Post and School-Business Partnerships of Long Island (SBPLI). During the event, 47 FIRST Long Island teams will gather in anticipation of learning about the forthcoming season’s robotics competition. Knowing only that this year’s theme is INFINITE RECHARGESM, the local FIRST teams, and the 4,000 teams from 35 countries, will receive this year’s game rules via a video feed that will broadcast at the same time across the globe.

Afterwards, each team will collect its kit of parts comprised of motors, batteries, construction materials and control and automation components. The students will use these kits to construct a 120-pound robot over the six-week design and build period leading up to the FIRST Robotics Competition tournaments.

When: Saturday, January 4
8:45 a.m. to noon

Where: LIU Post Tilles Center
720 Northern Blvd., Greenvale, NY 11548

Directions: LIE to Exit 41N (NY-106 N/NY-107 N/Oyster Bay). Use the right two lanes to turn right onto NY-106 N/NY-107 N/N Broadway. After 0.6 mile, keep left to continue to Cedar Swamp Rd. After 3.5 miles, turn left onto NY-25A W/Northern Blvd. Once on Northern Blvd., at the second traffic light (approximately 1 mile), make a left on Post Ln. at the LIU Post Tilles Center marquee road sign (entrance to LIU Post campus). Go past the two stop signs. Tilles Center is located on the left, after the second stop sign and behind the parking lot.

Photo Ops: SBPLI representatives watching the live transmission along with FIRST robotics team participants and their mentors. FIRST teams picking up their kits of parts. Students inspecting the challenge in order to develop strategies for robot construction, and to determine if they will play offense, defense, or both. Students’ parents learning about SBPLI’s mission and the importance of sustaining the FIRST robotics programs on Long Island. Representatives from sponsors including FESTO Corporation, altice USA, Zebra Technologies and BAE Systems.

Melissa A. Luff Loizides Joins SBPLI’s Board of Directors

Melissa A. Luff Loizides

KINGS PARK, NEW YORK — School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) — also known as FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition in Science and Technology) Long Island — has announced that Melissa A. Luff Loizides has joined its Board of Directors. She replaces Joe Sicinski, who retired from the board.

Ms. Loizides is a Senior Human Resources Executive at Zebra Technologies Corporation in Holtsville, New York, which sponsors SBPLI’s Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition. In her role, she serves as the senior human resources business partner to the chief product and solutions officer and the chief supply chain and services officer, both of whom report to the chief executive officer.

Prior to joining Zebra, Ms. Loizides was the Vice President of the Equities Division at the Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. in New York, New York. She has a Bachelor of Science (cum laude) degree and a Master of Science degree from St. Joseph’s College in Patchogue.

“I am very pleased to join the Board of Directors at SBPLI,” Ms. Loizides said. “Our company has been involved with the organization’s Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition as a sponsor and I think it’s great to be part of an organization that uses these events to get children interested in science, engineering and technology.”

“We are proud to welcome Ms. Loizides on the board,” said Bertram Dittmar, Executive Director, SBPLI. “Her business experience working for a major Long Island technology corporation will prove to be an asset to our group. She will be able to assist us in helping to get out SBPLI’s message and more clearly define our mission.”

For more information on SBPLI or the FIRST Robotics Competition, or to become a sponsor, please visit www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

Long Island Children Apply Research and Robotics to Explore CITY SHAPER(SM) in the FIRST ® LEGO® League Challenge

KINGS PARK, NEW YORK, DECEMBER 19, 2019 – Creativity and science will come together at this season’s FIRST® LEGO® League Long Island Qualifying Tournaments at the following dates and locations:

  • Saturday, January 11, 2020 at William Floyd High School, 240 Mastic Beach Road, Mastic Beach, from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, January 25, 2020 at Huntington High School, 188 Oakwood Road, Huntington from 7 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, January 26, 2020 at Huntington High School, 188 Oakwood Road, Huntington from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 8, 2020 at Mineola High School, 10 Armstrong Road, Garden City Park from 7 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, February 9, 2020 at Mineola High School, 10 Armstrong Road, Garden City Park from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

More than 180 Long Island teams of 9- to 14-year-old children and their coaches will demonstrate their problem-solving skills, creative thinking, teamwork, competitive play, sportsmanship, and sense of community in this season’s challenge, CITY SHAPERSM. The local Qualifiers are presented by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island Inc., also known as FIRST Long Island.

For the CITY SHAPER Challenge, FIRST collaborated with experts in the fields of architecture, civil engineering, infrastructure, sustainability, and urban planning. These experts, who made up the Challenge Advisory Team, helped to create a theme and challenge missions that reflect what it takes to design and construct practical, sustainable and beautiful buildings and spaces, catering to the diverse needs of their users.

The competition is judged in three areas: Innovation Project, Robot Design, and Core Values, which embody aspects of teamwork and good sportsmanship. Top robot game scores are also honored as teams will have to program their LEGO MINDSTORMS® robots to solve a set of missions on an obstacle course set on a thematic playing surface.

FIRST LEGO League is an international program for 9- to 16-year-olds (ages vary by country) created in a partnership between FIRST and the LEGO Group in 1998 to get children excited about science and technology – and teach them valuable career and life skills. Using LEGO® MINDSTORMS® technologies and LEGO® Education materials, children work alongside adult Mentors to design, build, and program autonomous robots and create an innovative solution to a problem as part of their research project. After eight intense weeks, the competition season culminates at high-energy, sports-like tournaments. Like any other organized “sport,” teams also fundraise, create a team identity, and go on field trips.

Currently in its 21st year, FIRST LEGO League anticipates participation by approximately 38,800 teams in more than 100 countries competing in hundreds of qualifying tournaments and championship tournaments. About 310,000 children will compete to win honors and recognition. Teams will also have the opportunity to participate at the FIRST LEGO League World Festival, to be held in conjunction with the FIRST Championship in Detroit in April.

“The FIRST LEGO League students on Long Island will be working diligently to identify real-life problems we face when constructing and designing new buildings in our community,” says Stephanie Stern, FIRST LEGO League Co-Director. “It’s amazing how passionate they are about finding a solution. It’s going to be really exciting to see what they devise when they present at the Qualifiers.”

*Admission to the FIRST LEGO League event is open to the public and is FREE-of-charge.

For more information, visit www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

Seventeen Teams Take Part in Eighth Annual Half Hollow Hills Invitational

Event is Presented by Half Hollow Hills High School West with Support from School-Business Partnerships of Long Island

The winning alliance of (left to right) Sachem High School Team #263 “Sachem Aftershock,” Westhampton Beach High School Team #3171 “Hurricanes” and Hicksville High School Team #1468 “J-Birds” is joined by event referees after the awards ceremony of the Eighth Annual Half Hollow Hills Invitational, which took place on November 2 at Half Hollow Hills High School West in Dix Hills.

(Dix Hills, NY) — On November 2, teachers, principals, administrators and community members from Long Island school districts came out to Half Hollow Hills High School West in Dix Hills to watch the Eighth Annual Half Hollow Hills Invitational, which was presented by the school and School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI).

Now in its eighth year, the FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Long Island Half Hollow Hills Invitational has become a staple of the local FIRST Robotics Competition season. The event also signifies the conclusion of the 2019 season. The 2020 FIRST Robotics Competition season will begin with the kickoff, which will take place on January 4, 2020 at LIU Post Tilles Center.

This year’s event featured 17 teams, which competed using the robots they built for the 2019 SBPLI Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition that was held in March. The challenge was dubbed DESTINATION: DEEP SPACE(SM) Presented by The Boeing Company, in which two three-team alliances had two minutes and 15 seconds to prepare the rockets and cargo ship with hatch panels, load as many cargo pods as possible and return the robot to its Habitat.

The winning alliance was comprised of Sachem High School Team #263 “Sachem Aftershock,” Westhampton Beach High School Team #3171 “Hurricanes” and Hicksville High School Team #1468 “J-Birds” The finalists were Kings Park High School Team #5736 “Kingsmen,” Patchogue-Medford High School Team #263 “Mohawks” and Our Lady of Mercy High School Team #6746 “Mustangs.”

The Invitational is designed to showcase the benefits of robotics programs and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education to students, schools, communities and local businesses.

For more information on SBPLI or the FIRST Robotics Competition, please visit www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

MEDIA ADVISORY for Saturday, November 2, 2019: Eighth Annual Half Hollow Hills Invitational FIRST® Robotics Competition Closes Out 2019 Season

Who: School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) representatives and volunteers
FIRST Robotics Competition teams (full list noted below)
Half Hollow Hills School District representatives
Half Hollow Hills High School Robotics Team Mentors

What: The Eighth Annual Half Hollow Hills (HHH) Invitational FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition, the final event of the 2019 FIRST® Long Island season, brings together students and coaches from 18 Long Island teams for a day of friendly, tournament-style, STEM-fueled competition. During the event, teams will participate in an enjoyable and engaging learning environment that enhances problem-solving skills, cooperation and teamwork, under the rules and guidelines of the 2019 FIRST Robotics Competition challenge, dubbed DESTINATION: DEEP SPACESM Presented by The Boeing Company. During the Invitational, two three-team alliances will bring their robots to the playing field to solve a variety of problems to score points and win rounds. When the event is over, the 2020 FIRST season will officially begin.

Residents, teachers, administrators and business leaders from the surrounding areas are being invited to attend and discover first-hand the benefits that FIRST Robotics programs provide to students.

When: Saturday, November 2
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Where: Half Hollow Hills High School West
375 Wolf Hill Road
Dix Hills, NY 11746>

Directions: Take 495 West to North Service Road in Dix Hills to Exit 51 (Deer Park Avenue). Take Deer Park Avenue north. At the third traffic light, turn left onto Wolf Hill Road. Destination will be located one mile down the road on the right.

Photo Ops: Representatives from School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. discussing the challenge and the importance of robotics and STEM in education. Teams presenting their robots. Teams working together to solve problems.

Enclosed is a list of teams that will participate in the Eighth Annual Half Hollow Hills Invitational on Saturday, November 2: