By Matthew Sockol
A robotics team representing Allentown High School has qualified to participate in a world championship competition for the first time.
Team 1807 Redbird Robotics has earned the right to take part at the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) Robotics World Championship to be held in St. Louis, Mo., from April 26-29.
According to Team 1807 founder Chris Nalbone, more then 600 teams worldwide compete in the championship.
An online fundraiser seeking $10,000 to help the students cover the cost of registration, shipping and travel expenses can be found at https://www.gofundme.com/1807-redbirds-to-first-champs
As of April 14, $2,555 had been donated.
According to the online fundraiser, Team 1807 qualified for the world championship event by winning the Mid-Atlantic District Championship at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pa., from April 5-8. Allentown was making its first appearance at the district championship.
“Watching the team in action is amazing,” Team 1807 Redbirds mentor David DePinho said. “The students have consistently demonstrated the ideas and actions to be successful, and there is no doubt this will translate to the professional world beyond their academic experiences.
“Powered by their great work in robotics, it is exciting to think about the future goals these students will achieve,” he said.
In a recent article published in the Examiner, Allentown sophomore Anna Plank said Nalbone founded Team 1807 more than a decade ago.
“(Nalbone) created a community within the school that was diverse in skills and hobbies, but unified in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics),” Anna said. “Fast-forward to today and the ideals and work of Allentown’s FIRST Robotics Team 1807 are still in full energy.”