2019 FIRST® Robotics Competition Season Kicks Off at LIU Post’s Tilles Center on January 5

Thursday, December 13, 2018
SBPLI FRC Kick Off 2019

The FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition season will kick off at the Tilles Center at LIU Post, located at 720 Northern Boulevard, Brookville, NY on Saturday, January 5 at 8:45 a.m. FIRST Robotics Competition teams from across Long Island will gather in anticipation of learning about the upcoming season’s robotics competition.

Knowing only that this year’s theme is DESTINATION: DEEP SPACESM, the local FIRST teams, and the 3,647 teams around the world, will receive this year’s game rules via a video feed that will broadcast at the same time across the globe.

During the Long Island Kick Off, School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) DBA FIRST® Long Island which presents the event, will treat students and parents to presentations from alumni, mentors and sponsors, including Zebra Technologies, regarding the impact of the program on local communities and businesses. Towards the close of the event, each team will collect its kit of parts to construct a 120-pound robot over the six-week design and build period leading up to the FIRST Robotics Competition.

“Zebra Technologies is excited to sponsor FIRST Robotics Long Island as it aligns with our focus on innovation,” said Melissa Luff Loizides, Senior Director of Human Resources and Community Relations for Zebra Technologies. “Our employee mentors and FIRST alumni volunteer with FIRST Robotics teams across Nassau and Suffolk counties as part of our commitment to promote education and STEM initiatives to give people, especially our youth, a performance edge.” 

This year, two regional tournaments will be held as part of the SBPLI Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition. They will take place on March 24 to 27 and March 27 to 30 at Hofstra University’s David S. Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex. Each event will serve as a separate regional, with different teams competing in separate alliances and tournament rounds. Some of the teams set to participate in the local regionals will move on to compete at the 2019 FIRST Championship in Detroit.

This year’s Kick Off and regionals will be especially exciting because 2019 marks the 20th anniversary of the SBPLI Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition. There will be special guests at both events speaking about the history of the program on Long Island and its lasting impact.

Leading up to the regionals, SBPLI students will work with engineering mentors to apply concepts of math and science learned in the classroom to build their robots. Students will also learn important concepts such as teamwork, problem solving and healthy competition. Many SBPLI students use these skills while pursuing science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) studies and careers.

Over the years, FIRST students from Long Island have received millions of dollars in scholarships for higher education. This year, there are 200 scholarship providers who will give students participating in FIRST access to $80 million worth of scholarships.

“We are thrilled to get our 2019 season underway and are looking forward to another great kick-off event,” says Larry Toonkel, Co-Director, FIRST Robotics Competition, FIRST Long Island. “Since this is the 20th anniversary of our regional, we have a lot of exciting surprises planned throughout the year.”

For more information on SBPLI or FIRST Long Island, please visit www.sbpli-lifirst.org.


January 5, 2019 at LIU Post’s Tilles Center

#28                 Pierson Middle/High School (Sag Harbor)

#263               Sachem High School (North & East)

#271               Bay Shore Senior High School

#287               William Floyd High School

#329               Patchogue-Medford High School

#352               Carle Place Middle/High School

#353               Plainview-Old Bethpage High School

#496               Earl L. Vandermeulen High School

#514               Miller Place High School

#527               Plainedge Senior High School

#545               Island Trees High School

#564               Longwood High School

#569               East Meadow High School

#601               Hampton Bays High School

#810               Smithtown High School (East & West)

#870               Southold Junior-Senior High School

#871               West Islip Senior High School

#884               Malverne Senior High School

#1468             Hicksville High School

#1537             Uniondale High School

#1546             Baldwin Senior High School

#1554             Oceanside Senior High School

#1751             Comsewogue High School

#1803             Paul D. Schreiber Senior High School [Port Washington]

#2027             Westbury High School

#2161             Walt Whitman High School

#2347             Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School

#2487             Sayville High School and Bayport-Blue Point High School

#2638             Great Neck South High School

#2869             Bethpage Senior High School

#2872             Wheatley School

#2875             Cold Spring Harbor High School

#3137             Connetquot High School

#3171             Westhampton Beach Senior High School

#3624             Half Hollow Hills High School (West & East)

#3950             North Shore High School

#4006             Central Islip High School

#4458             Center Moriches High School

#4567             Seaford Senior High School

#5016             Huntington High School

#5659             Bridgehampton School

#5736             Kings Park High School

#6422             Rocky Point/Shoreham

#6423             Ward Melville High School

#6746             Our Lady of Mercy Academy [Syosset]

#6806             Mineola High School

#7400             Independent team in Melville, NY


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 over 200 of the Fortune 500 companies and more than $30 million in college scholarships, the not-for-profit organization hosts the FIRST® Robotics Competition for students in Grades 9-12; FIRST® Tech Challenge for Grades 7-12; FIRST® LEGO® League for Grades 4-8; and FIRST® LEGO® League Jr. for Grades K-4. 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.firstinspires.org.

About School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc.
School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) DBA FIRST® Long Island is a fully volunteer-run 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1984 by Fred Breithut with the goal of developing partnerships between local high schools and businesses. His goal was to provide students with practical experience and curriculum development, while helping the business community develop its future workforce, which resulted in the formation of over 100 partnerships. In 1999, SBPLI brought the FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) to Long Island, which featured just eight FIRST® Robotics Competition high school teams. Since then, the Long Island Regional FIRST® Robotics Competition has grown to two events with over 80 teams competing each year. SBPLI also hosts Long Island’s annual FIRST® LEGO League Qualifying and Championship Tournaments and the FIRST® LEGO League Junior Expos, in which over 2,000 elementary and middle school students from Nassau and Suffolk Counties take part each year. In 2016, SBPLI added the FIRST® Tech Challenge to its roster of programs. For more information about the programs, or to learn how to become a sponsor, visit www.sbpli-lifirst.org.

About Zebra Technologies 

Zebra (NASDAQ: ZBRA) empowers the front line of business in retail/ecommerce, manufacturing, transportation and logistics, healthcare and other industries to achieve a performance edge. With more than 10,000 partners across 100 countries, we deliver industry-tailored, end-to-end solutions that intelligently connect people, assets and data to help our customers make business-critical decisions. Our market-leading solutions elevate the shopping experience, track and manage inventory as well as improve supply chain efficiency and patient care. Ranked on Forbes’ list of America’s Best Employers for the last three years, Zebra helps our customers capture their edge. For more information, visit www.zebra.com or sign up for our news alerts. Follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook