Fryeburg Academy’s Robotics Team Headed to the State Championship
Fryeburg Academy is excited to announce that its newly-formed robotics team is headed to the State Championship after winning first place at the Southern Maine Vex Robotics League finals at Cape Elizabeth High School on Tuesday, January 22.
The team originally formed as a club last year after an overwhelming interest by students. With the support of grants and the administration, the club quickly raised the necessary funds to purchase the robotics kits necessary to build and compete in the league.
“These kids have been amazing since the start,” says FA robotics coach and computer science teacher, David Sartory. “We had so much interest that we were able to form two Parsec12 teams —a name the kids derived from a Star Wars joke. They have worked really, really hard and have so much heart to keep learning and growing.”
In the VEX Robotics “Turning Point” Competition League, the game is played on a 12’x12’ square field with two alliances — one red and one blue — composed of two teams to compete in matches consisting of a fifteen second autonomous period, followed by a one minute and forty-five-second driver-controlled period. The object of the game is to attain a higher score than the opposing alliance by high scoring or low scoring caps, toggling flags, and by alliance parking or center parking robots on the game field’s platforms.
“The key to our first and second place win at the finals was just pure experimentation and excellent leadership from our older students,” continues Sartory. “The team decided to build a robot equipped with a double shooter, which was a real game changer for us. And, the strategic alliance with the robotics team from Greely as well as Thornton also gave us an added advantage to secure the first and second place win.”
The Vex Robotics League State Championship competition will be held in South Portland at the Point Community Center on February 23 and will host over 50 teams from across the state in an all-day tournament.
When asked what he hoped his students were learning from the experience, Sartory responded: “Besides the obvious problem-solving and leadership skills, I think one of the proudest moments for me was on a bus ride back to campus when I overheard the group —composed of a bunch of diverse backgrounds, locations from around the world, age groups, and interests — talking about what they want to work on next and inviting each other to their homes during February break. To me, they represent the epitome of what makes Fryeburg Academy a great school.”
On Saturday, March 30, 2019, members of the Fryeburg Academy Vocal Jazz Ensemble performed at the Maine Music Educators Association Vocal Jazz and Show Choir Festival, where they earned the coveted Gold rating, averaging a score of 97 out of 100 points possible. And, since they secured one of the top two spots in their division, FA’s Vocal Jazz Ensemble was invited to compete for first place in the “Night Finals.”
On Saturday, March 23, senior Antonina "Tonia" Zakorchemna and junior Artem Laptiev — both international resident students from Ukraine — participated in the 73rd Maine State Science Fair at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, ME. The annual fair is organized by the Jackson Laboratory and the Reach Program—a program of the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance.
This year, 22 students traveled to New York City to attend the four-day National High School Model United Nations (NHSMUN) Conference on March 1-4. Now in its 45th year, the NHSMUN is the largest and most prestigious conference, hosting over 5000 participants from more than 75 countries and 300 schools. The New York-based conference-- surrounded by offices of Permanent Missions to the United Nations as well as the United Nations Headquarters itself--provides the perfect backdrop for a robust international affairs experience and a broadening of global issues awareness. Students are provided with an unparalleled opportunity to experience the theory and practice of international relations firsthand and have the opportunity to attend the opening or closing ceremonies in the UN General Assembly chamber, where actual diplomats convene every year.
On March 15 and 16, FA's Jazz bands traveled to South Portland High School to attend the Maine State Instrumental Jazz Festival. The New Standard Combo and FA Big Band both performed very well, earning silver while the Yukon King Combo and Fryeburg Academy Jazz Orchestra won bronze. It is noteworthy that FA's New Standard Combo earned 74 out of 75 points for their performances--one point shy of claiming the gold standard and was one of the highest scoring combo performances of the event.
At the festival, Georgia Stafford '19 won the Dale Huff Outstanding Musicianship Award--awarded to the top-rated musician in the combo division. Other outstanding performances recognized at the jazz festival were as follows:
The Fryeburg Academy Math Team finished the season by defending their Pi-Cone League Championship title at Leavitt High School on March 6th. The Pi-Cone League consists of 14 teams from 11 regional high schools throughout Central Maine. Five meets were held this year from October through March. 50 Fryeburg Academy students competed on the math team, the highest number of participants on record. Senior team captains Antonina Zackorchemna '19 and Celine Lyu '19 did an outstanding job of leading the team this year. Weekly practices were held at the LaCasse Dining Hall.
Fryeburg Academy is an independent boarding and day school, serving grades 9-12 and postgraduate. We invite you to explore our site and learn how students from around the globe find their place in the world through our exceptional academic, art, and athletic programs.