Shelton Rallies To Send Robotics Team To Global Competition

Written by Casey Donahue; Karen Tensa on April 29, 2017
Shelton Rallies To Send Robotics Team To Global Competition

SHELTON, Conn. A middle school robotics team from Shelton recently blew away the competition at the state championships, and is now asking for the community to help get them to the world championship in St. Louis.

Shelton Intermediate School's robotics team SIStematics is part of the award-winning Shelton Middle School Robotics program, and is currently in its 13th season of participating in the FIRST Lego League (FLL) Robotics Competition. They will represent the state of Connecticut at the FIRST World Championship in St. Louis in late April.

The trip can be costly, so a GoFundMe campaign has been set up to help pay for some of the expenses. The team is asking for community members to provide any financial support that they can, or to help spread the word through social media.

The 7th grade SIStematics team consists of Michael Caruso, Shayaan Dabiran, Ria Dalvi, Connor Dapp, Austin D'Aulizio, Katie Daxner, Josh Mallette and Diya Patel. The team's coaches and mentors consist of robotics advisor John Niski, FLL mentor Josh Cayer, FLL mentor Michelle Piccolo, coach Ashish Dalvi and coach Jim Daxner, as well as numerous parents and mentors that have helped the team along the way.

The FLL competition is designed for students in Perry Hill and Shelton Intermediate Schools, and gives them an opportunity to explore their interests in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education. They participate in the international FLL competition every year and service about 40 students per year associated with four teams. The main objective is to partner interested students with volunteer mentors, teachers and parents to work collaboratively on projects involving robotics and research.

This year's theme is "Animal Allies," and students have been researching ways to solve real-world problems associated with animals and human interaction. The 7th grade SIStematics team recently won the Connecticut State FLL Championship and Global Innovation Nomination for their project, which helps solve the problem of Dolphin Bycatch. They are on their way to St. Louis, and are continuing to prepare on a regular basis for the prestigious competition.