At the beginning of the season, we noticed that every year, numerous first-year FTC teams join our home league in Austin only to drop FTC shortly after. To remedy this, we organized and hosted a student-volunteer-run invitational tournament on March 4th for first and second-year FTC teams.  We strove to create an environment conducive to student success in order to inspire the participants to continue their first journey. In the end, over a dozen teams attended our event, pushing our reach to new heights. Below is the live stream with the results from the event.

We were interviewed by our head of school on how we were impacting our local community and our plan to continue to reach out and perform well at competitions for the rest of the season and beyond!

Our Robotics Showcase provided an opportunity for both prospective students and representatives from local companies to learn about FIRST, our Robotics Team, and our goal of promoting STEM initiatives within our school and our community.  With over 50 people in attendance, we had 4 prospective students who wanted to learn more about our robotics team or offered STEM-related class.  Parents and representatives from a variety of local industries were also in attendance – ranging from healthcare industries to technology companies, such as AMD, Dell, Mediafly, UX, and Hive9.

Team 12928 traveled across Texas to the city of Dallas. Once in Dallas, the team went to Cowboys’ Stadium to participate in the YTexas summit, an organization bringing together business leaders from around the world. The members competed in multiple tech and programming scrimmages to showcase their skills and enrich their learning experience. One of our members, Peter Williams, gave a speech to the business leaders there about what FIRST is and why teams compete. This summit helped our team network with potential sponsors and employers, and gave some of the Cowboys fans on our team a once-in-a-lifetime experience to see the ins and outs of Cowboys Stadium in Dallas!

We not only had the opportunity to show off our robot along with Savio’s Iron Eagles…

But we also had an amazing opportunity to connect with tech companies and learn about what they do…

Compete with other teams in coding challenges…

And of course… play football!

(Because what else do you do in an NFL stadium?)


St. Gabriel’s Catholic School and St. Michael’s Catholic Academy (us) joined forces amounting to approximately 750 students for a service day, during which the LightSaders introduced this season’s game to the younger students, demonstrated our world-renowned robot from last year, and had an obstacle course for the younger students to complete and compete in. We also assembled 18 bicycles with the younger students and plan to deliver them to the Salvation Army in Austin for Christmas gifts they can administer to families in need.

Over the summer, we invited team 8886, Saber Robotics from St. Gabriel’s, and any interested students at St. Michael’s to a week-long summer camp where we introduced them to the basic concepts of programming and computer-aided design (CAD).