FA Robotics Earns Spot at the VEX World Championships

Fryeburg Academy is pleased to announce that its robotics team named 20005B "Free Cheese" earned a coveted spot at the VEX World Championships, which will be held in Dallas, Texas, on April 25-27th.
The team finished the qualification matches at States undefeated and in first place, earning them the number one seed in the final bracket out of 48 teams. "We took first place in the Skills Competition, which combines driver skills and autonomous programming skills," says David Sartory, FA's technology instructor and robotics coach. "Our first-place position in the tournament also was the highest season score in all Maine rankings, ultimately earning the team's space at Worlds."

The inception of FA's robotics club was formed during the 2017-18 academic year and primarily student-led by the Academy's first Ukraine Global Scholar (UGS), Tonia Zakorchemna '19. Six years later, another UGS student, senior and team captain  Yeo Bondar, took the team to Worlds for the first time this year. "We began in an unused dorm room with two students and have grown to include around eight competition team members and another six club members each year," continues Sartory. "Since that year, we've expanded multiple times and now have a beautiful full-time lab adjacent to the computer lab. The students built it, and it reflects them in every way. It's truly their space, and they have earned the school's trust by handling the gear and the space well."

When asked what skill set the team employed to yield such a successful outcome, Sartory states the team is well known for being a great alliance partner. "The entire VRC program relies on effective use of mostly random partnerships, and our 20005B is helpful, cooperative, and fun to work with," continues Sartory. "Their well-deserved Sportsmanship Award,  chosen by a team of judges who spend the day watching the tournament and interactions between teams, is further proof. In addition, this team really took the challenge seriously and, partway through the season, realized that they could be more effective by ignoring one of the larger aspects of the game (shooting discs) and focusing more on fast and accurate movement and a powerful endgame, allowing a partner more time to focus on discs. This strategy paid off repeatedly."

As for the team's goals for the future, their immediate goals are to prepare for the upcoming VEX World's Championship in April and recruit more students to join the club. "The team is planning a complete rebuild, focusing on improving anything that broke, failed, bent, or otherwise surprised them during the regular season,” concludes Sartory. "I feel we have reached a great spot in our growth, but I'd love to see more of the teams reach three to four more students each, which is when dividing the work gets truly interesting. We're attempting to reach out to more students who don't realize their skills are needed and valuable on a robotics team. Everyone assumes you need to want to build robots, and obviously, that's a part of it, but the reality is so much more interesting. We need artists, designers, planners, people who love organizing, athletes who understand competition and strategy, coders, scouts, and researchers. I'm hoping we can use some of this momentum to get more kids involved in the less-obvious parts of the program."

List of 5 news stories.

  • FA Robotics Earns Spot at the VEX World Championships

    Fryeburg Academy is pleased to announce that its robotics team named 20005B "Free Cheese" earned a coveted spot at the VEX World Championships, which will be held in Dallas, Texas, on April 25-27th.
  • FA Becomes the First FFA Chapter Member in Western Maine

    Fryeburg Academy is pleased to announce it has joined the National Future Farmers of America Organization (FFA) as an initiative to grow its agricultural programming. “After several months of research, it was important to me to bring FFA to Fryeburg because it will open up more opportunities for our students involved in agriculture education here,” says Jennifer Solter-Jones, FA’s science instructor and school farm manager. “Whether it be through leadership development, new learning opportunities, or a chance to serve our community, this organization directly ties in with what we are trying to do with our program, so it is a natural fit to have our own chapter.”

  • FA Announces Fall 2022-23 Semester I Honor/High Honor Roll

    We are pleased to announce students who have earned the academic distinction of Honors and High Honors for Semester I in the fall of 2022-23:

    Grade 9-Honors
    Allain, Alexander
    Artigau Aleu, Francesc
    Barnaby, Tucker
    Bellamy, Kiley
    Bowen, Adger
    Boyd, Cody
    Brown, Jordan
    Canfield, Tyler
    Clement, Megan
    Drew, Dilen
    Drew, George
    Eveleth, Jacob
    Guthro, Thomas
    Han, Holym
    Hayes, Jared
    Iacozili, Merrik
    Kubichko, Jaxson
    Madrazo Zertuche, Eduardo
    Massey, Richard
    McBride, Rylan
    Meier, Andrew
    Mitchell, Gaige
    Moser, Kaelan
    Patino Aguayo, Jeronimo
    Pierce, Noah
    Santos, Sharis
    Snow, Caleb
    Spofford, Connor
    Spofford, Haley
    Twigg-Smith, William

  • FA's Fall Sports Assembly Honors Student-Athletes

    On Wednesday, November 16th, Fryeburg Academy celebrated the fall sports season with its annual fall sports awards assembly held in the Leura Hill Eastman Performing Arts Center. The following student-athletes were recognized for their outstanding performance during the fall 2022-23 season:
  • Joseph R. Manning Appointed as Fryeburg Academy’s Next Head of School

    FRYEBURG, ME, OCTOBER 26, 2022— Fryeburg Academy’s Board of Trustees is very pleased and excited to announce that Joseph R. Manning has been appointed as the Academy’s next Head of School. The Trustees' unanimous decision resulted from a rigorous search process by the Board’s Search Committee, which worked closely with internationally renowned search firm Carney Sandoe and Associates, based in Boston, Massachusetts. The Committee and consultants conducted a stakeholder survey, met on campus with over sixty stakeholder groups, authored a report on the next Head of School’s necessary traits, and engaged with Manning through extensive interviews. 

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