Qualifying Tournaments Begin for the FIRST Tech Challenge VELOCITY VORTEX Season

Creativity and science will come together beginning in January as FIRST® Tech Challenge teams, comprised of students age 12 to 18, along with their mentors, will demonstrate their problem-solving skills, creative thinking, teamwork, competitive play, sportsmanship and sense of community.


More than 46,000 students in almost 20 countries will program robots to compete on a 12-foot by 12-foot field in an alliance format against other teams. Robots are built from a reusable platform, powered by Android technology and programmed using Java.


The FIRST Long Island Qualifiers will be held as follows:

Sunday, January 8, 2017 at Lynbrook High School

Sunday, January 15, 2017 at Center Moriches High School

Saturday, January 28, 2017 at Syosset High School


Awards that will be given include:

  • Inspire Award: team that best exemplifies the spirit of FIRST Tech Challenge
  • Think Award: team that best manages the engineering design process
  • Connect Award: team most connected to the local and engineering communities
  • Rockwell Collins Innovate Award: team with the most ingenuity and inventiveness
  • PTC® Design Award: team with the most compelling industrial design elements
  • Motivate Award: team acts as Ambassadors for FIRST; exemplifies outstanding outreach/recruitment efforts
  • Control Award: team that uses sensors and software to enhance the robot’s functionality on the field
  • Winning Alliance Award: alliance that wins the final elimination rounds
  • Finalist Alliance Award: alliance in the final match of the competition


Some winning teams will have the opportunity to advance to the FIRST Long Island Championship presented by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI) to be held on Saturday, February 11, 2017 at Smithtown High School West. Three teams from the FIRST Long Island Championship will go on to the Super-Regional Championship Tournament in Pennsylvania, and may then advance to the FIRST Tech Challenge World Championship at the America's Center Dome in St. Louis on April 26 to 29, 2017.


FIRST Long Island, presented by SBPLI, Inc., is very pleased to work in partnership with these high schools to showcase the STEM talent that exists on Long Island,” says Bertram Dittmar, Executive Director, SBPLI. “We look forward to seeing the students display their abilities and their Gracious Professionalism.”