Update: December 3, 2018

“The judges were extremely impressed by the students’ presentation skills along with their knowledge and team work,” said Science Teacher and Advisor Claire Fornsel.

Soon after their regional win, WAVY-TV 10 caught wind of their success and came to campus to interview the team. Click here to view the story.

The two-day state championships in Harrisonburg is the largest LEGO Robotics competition in the nation. The team entered day two of the competition in the top 12 in the Robot Design category. As the day progressed, they advanced to the top three in Robot Performance. The team ended up taking first place in Programming, a component of Robot Design, and third place in Robot Performance, a feat the team was really proud of!

“One of the judges was so excited to see the robot she had seen on the newscast last week,” said Claire.

“I was really excited for the trip because I got to spend some good time with my teammates,” said Marah Gordon ’22.

Team members at the state competition included Marah Gordon ’22, Sarah Morrow ’23, Kenna O'Brien ’24, Austin Hrisko ’25 and Parker Howlett ’25. Teammate Colin Mcglynn ’25 was unable to attend as he was fiddling for delegates in Washington, D.C.



Middle School LEGO Robotics Team Takes Off!

The LEGO Robotics team is back in full swing this year, and they’ve started with a bang.

The theme for this year’s FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) LEGO League is INTO ORBIT, challenging young innovators to make long-duration space exploration easier for humans. In step with the theme, Norfolk Collegiate’s team is tackling the issue of firefighting in space.

The thought for putting out fires in a vacuum came about when Zachary Campbell, an engineer with the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) through Virginia Space spoke with students about what it takes to send a rocket into space.

Campbell talked about the kinds of rockets MARS sends into space and how they’ve built launch pads to help get them there. These pads are equipped with a water deluge system to keep temperatures down, protect against lightning and enable a flame trench.

“I truly enjoyed my time at Norfolk Collegiate,” Campbell said. “The students were very engaged, responsive and interested in space research and travel, especially for their young age. It was very inspiring to see the future generation of scientist, engineers and mathematicians so excited in the field, and I am excited to see their final LEGO Robotics design.”

This year’s FIRST LEGO League regional competition is on Nov. 17 at Norview High School—where the team placed first last year. If they make it, they advance to the state competition mid-December at James Madison University.

Ultimately, the goal of LEGO Robotics is to keep students interested in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).

“My only concern is that these students want to continue learning,” said coach and dad to team member Sarah Morrow ’23 Ret. Lt. Cmdr. Skip Morrow. “I don’t care if we go into that competition and get a zero. As long as the kids worked together and learned something, that’s all I ask.”

To learn more about this year’s FIRST LEGO Challenge please click here.