Huntington High School’s robotics team is gathering steam as it preps for competition.
The team features a multi-pronged operation. It includes a marketing arm that routinely reaches out into the community in search of financial support and to spread the word that Huntington Robotics is a force to be reckoned with.
Successful sponsorship pitches have already been made to Gellerman Orthodontics, Palacios Law Group and Snake Tray Cable Tray Solutions.
“Dr. [Inna] Gellerman even brought the team pizza at the school at the start of our build season,” said junior Lindsay Saginaw, who head’s Huntington Robotics’ marketing and public relations efforts. “She and her staff were very impressed by the team’s rapid progress so early into the six-week build season. Dr. Gellerman looked on as members of the mechanical team tested a possible shooting mechanism for our robot.”
Huntington Robotics has been indefatigable in its search for support and in its efforts to draw more students into its ranks. “Our members even gave a sponsorship pitch in Spanish,” Ms. Saginaw said. “One aspect of the team that we are always looking to increase is team diversity and this year we hosted an interest meeting in Spanish, translated all official team documents into Spanish, as well as giving the pitch.”
Some promising new business team members are freshmen Christopher Mavrogian, Catherine Jamison, Abigail Holmes, Robert Jean-Gilles and Madelyn Kye, sophomores David Mosden, Luke Farrell and Jack Farrell and juniors David Alfaro and Michael Marziliano. “I am looking forward to the rest of the season with this group of students, who are all able to command a room well and market the team’s goal successfully,” Ms. Saginaw said.
Huntington Robotics team members have been out and about in the community since early last fall when the group marched in the high school’s Homecoming Day parade. Outreach events have also included:
• Participated in Dr. Gellerman’s Kiss Cancer Goodbye Walk in Heckscher Park. Team members walked around the large pond with their robot and engaged in an exercise display on the lawn.
• Participated in the high school student government’s Safe Halloween program for elementary school age children.
• Held a very successful fundraising event at Launchpad in Huntington village last fall.
• Participated in the East Northport Barnes and Noble Maker Faire, where the robot and team members educated customers about FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) robotics and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education.
• Participated in gift wrapping at Barnes and Noble. Huntington Robotics members wrapped customer’s books and promoted STEM.
• Participated in Long Island Lutheran High School’s FIRST Tech Challenge. “We were approached by our dedicated mentor Ed Parry, who wanted to host this smaller-scale FIRST competition at LuHi the first time,” Ms. Saginaw said. “So of course we sent several team members along to volunteer at the event and help out.”
• Participated in Huntington High School’s Back to School Night.
• Participated in the eighth grade orientation program at Huntington High School.
• Participated in Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School’s family technology night. Robotics team members were on hand with their robot, providing elementary school students and family members with an opportunity to drive the technological wonder.
• Spent time on Super Bowl Sunday helping to feed the community’s homeless. Team members worked with the Huntington Interfaith Homeless Initiative to package breakfast and lunch items for the following day. When the guests arrived at the shelter on Sunday, the robotics team members helped check them in and then served soup and dinner. The evening ended with dessert donated to the shelter by Huntington Robotics.
“Over the rest of the season, we hope to attend several board of education and PTSA meetings,” Ms. Saginaw said. “I am also excited about the possibility of having some members of the marketing team become FIRST ambassadors at this year’s regional competition at Hofstra University. Last year, I was an ambassador and gave tours around the arena and educated guests about the competition and goals of FIRST. I was able to inform a lot of visitors about the program while also creating important networking relationships.”