“Aerial AssistSM” Revealed at SBPLI’s 2014 FIRST® Robotics Competition Long Island Regional Game Kickoff

Monday, January 13, 2014
SBPLI 2014 First Robotics

STONY BROOK, New York — More than 800 teenagers from Long Island and metropolitan New York-area schools converged at the Jacob Javits Lecture Center at Stony Brook University on January 4 for a local kickoff of the FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition (FRC®) where they learned details of the 2014 robotics game called “Aerial AssistSM.”  


“The students who participate in the FIRST Robotics Competition are not only building robots; they are building character, self-respect, and relationships with their peers,” said Dean Kamen, president of DEKA Research & Development and FIRST Founder, adding, “Winning the game is fun, but the importance of FIRST is that you’ll get much more out of it than you put in, and it’s going to change the rest of your life.”


The 2014 game, “Aerial AssistSM,” is played by two Alliances of three teams each. Alliances compete by trying to score as many balls in goals as possible during a two-minute and 30-second match. Additional points are earned by robots working together to score goals, and by throwing and catching balls over a truss suspended just over five feet above the floor as they move the ball down the field.


In addition, SBPLI held a special session for the students’ parents in which they learned about the organization, its mission and the impact of the robotics programs on the students’ lives, both academically and professionally. SBPLI representatives, team mentors ,volunteers and former Long Island Regional FRC participants shared experiences and  highlighted the value and importance of the robotics programs. An interactive session followed in which the parents provided suggestions for important fundraising activities and ways to reach other parents in the program.


After learning the rules and being shown the playing field, teams received a Kit of Parts made up of motors, batteries, a control system, a PC, and a mix of automation components – and only limited instructions. Working with adult mentors, students have six weeks to design, build, program, and test their robots to meet the season’s engineering challenge. Once these young inventors build a robot, their teams will participate in the SBPLI Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition, which will take place on March 27-29 at Hofstra University’s David S. Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex.


The FRC kickoff was hosted by Stony Brook University's College Of Engineering and Applied Sciences and sponsored by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI), which has also sponsored the Long Island Regional FRC for the past fifteen years.


“This proves to be an exciting time for the students and the mentors when they learn the name and the rules of the game for this year’s FIRST Robotics Competition,” said Joani Madarash, Executive Director, School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. “We were very proud to present the FRC kickoff as we prepare for the upcoming Long Island Regional FRC in March.”


During the 2014 season, 49 teams from Long Island, New York City, the surrounding area and the Republic of Brazil will convene at Hofstra University for the Long Island Regional FRC on March 27-29, culminating with the 2014 FIRST Championship on April 24-27 at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis, Missouri. 


“The next six weeks will be crucial for these students as they design and construct their robots for this competition,” said Ms. Madarash. “The Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition showcases the talents of these students who learn not only the basic technological aspects of building their robots, but also about other concepts such as teamwork, problem solving and gracious professionalism.”


For more information, visit http://www.sbpli.org.



CAPTION: Students learn the rules of the new game, “Aerial AssistSM” at the FIRST Robotics season kickoff, held at Stony Brook University’s Jacob Javits Lecture Center on January 4.




*Photo is attached and available upon request.



About School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc.

School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) was founded in 1984 by Fred Breithut with the goal of developing partnerships between local high schools and businesses that would provide students with practical experience and curriculum development, while helping the business community develop its future workforce. Over 100 partnerships have been formed. In 1999, SBPLI brought the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition to Long Island, in which eight high school teams participated. Since then, the Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition has grown to 50 teams competing each year. SBPLI also hosts Long Island’s annual FIRST LEGO League Qualifying and Championship Tournaments and the Junior FIRST LEGO League Expo, in which approximately 1,000 elementary and middle school students from Nassau and Suffolk Counties take part each year. For more information, visit www.sbpli.org.



About FIRST®

Accomplished inventor Dean Kamen founded FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people. Based in Manchester, N.H., FIRST designs accessible, innovative programs to build self-confidence, knowledge, and life skills while motivating young people to pursue opportunities in science, technology, and engineering. With support from three out of every five Fortune 500 companies and nearly $12 million in college scholarships, the not-for-profit organization hosts the FIRST®Robotics Competition (FRC® ) and FIRST®Tech Challenge (FTC® ) for high-school students, FIRST®LEGO® League (FLL® ) for 9 to 14-year-olds, (9 to 16-year-olds outside the U.S. and Canada) and Junior FIRST®LEGO® League (Jr.FLL) for 6 to 9-year-olds. Gracious Professionalism™ is a way of doing things that encourages high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and respects individuals and the community. To learn more about FIRST, go to www.usfirst.org. To find FIRST Robotics Competition events and teams in your area, visit www.usfirst.org, and click on the map in the top right corner or visit ConnectAMillionMinds.com and enter your zip code.



# # #


FIRST® and FRC® are registered trademarks, and Gracious Professionalism™ is a common law trademark, of the United States Foundation For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (U.S. FIRST).