FIRST® Long Island is “All Systems Go” for Over 500 Participants at the Cradle of Aviation Museum

Wednesday, December 19, 2018
Cradle Aviation Event

CAPTION: Members of FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) LEGO League Jr. team “The Techno Queens” from Jericho Elementary School are joined by their coach, Rohit Bhatia (third from right) and Jeff Stern (second from right), Member, Board of Directors, School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc., at the Cradle of Aviation Museum during FIRST® LAUNCH: 2019 + ALL SYSTEMS GO! on November 2.

(Garden City, NY) — Over 500 FIRST® Long Island participants, their coaches, and families participated in the FIRST® LAUNCH: 2019 + ALL SYSTEMS GO! held at the Cradle of Aviation Museum on November 2. Robotics teams were on hand to showcase their work, promote applications for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), and prepare for this year’s upcoming FIRST Challenges.

During their time at the Museum, participants were launched into this year’s challenges related to the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing: DEEP SPACESM, ROVER RUCKUS, INTO ORBITSM, and MISSION MOONSM. Attendees were able to explore the Museum’s extensive Space Gallery collection, as well as ask Museum docents for details about the Apollo missions and the International Space Station. Attendees also had the opportunity to catch an out-of-this-world documentary, “Journey to Space,” which highlights Mars as the future of space travel.

In addition, the FIRST programs, presented by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI), used this exciting event to announce the celebration of 20 years on Long Island with the unveiling of its 20th anniversary logo. Their role in providing students the chance to use their STEM knowledge through the creative, engineering process of constructing robots excites students about the future. Because of the massive success of the event, FIRST Long Island has entered into a partnership with the Cradle of Aviation Museum and will hold more events in the future.

“The Cradle is thrilled to have hosted the FIRST LAUNCH. FIRST is a perfect match for the Museum. The program encourages students to learn to work together, inspires them to be STEM engineers, and provides a foundation for real-world problem solving which gives students a great foundation for their future.” said Catherine Gonzalez, Education Director at the Cradle of Aviation Museum.

FIRST Long Island has teams in more than 90 school districts in grades one through twelve, as well as many home and community teams. Interested students can contact FIRST® Long Island for details about this year’s challenges and events at Families interested in exploring Long Island’s role in the space program, or to see the feature “Journey to Space,” can visit the Museum any time. Museum information for film times and ticket prices are available online at

For more information on SBPLI or the FIRST® Robotics Competition, please visit


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

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

About The Cradle of Aviation Museum and Education Center

The Cradle of Aviation Museum and Education Center is home to over 75 planes and spacecraft representing over 100 years of aviation history and Long Island’s only Giant Screen Dome Theater. Currently, the museum is celebrating “Countdown to Apollo at 50” sponsored by the Robert D.L. Gardiner Foundation, showcasing Long Island and Grumman’s significant role in the Apollo program. The Museum was recently recognized and listed on New York State’s National Register of Historic Places as a significant part of American history. The museum is located on Museum Row, Charles Lindbergh Blvd., in East Garden City. For more information call (516) 572-4111 or visit