A robotics milestone for Mid-Pacific - Mid-Pacific Institute

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A robotics milestone for Mid-Pacific

The first time that Mid-Pacific has won a tournament of this caliber...

Posted on October 13, 2016 by Scot Allen

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The Pan Pacific VEX Robotics tournament Oct. 7-10 brought together teams from Hawaii, Taiwan, the Mainland U.S. and China to compete in spirited robot competition. After the virtual smoke cleared, Mid-Pacific's high school team emerged with its first major win.

"This is the first time that Mid-Pacific has won a tournament of this caliber," Said Weyland Bailey, Engineering/Academic Technology faculty. "The students have the drive (to compete and win) and are very dedicated. They possess a willingness to learn and hone their craft that always amazes me."

The Mid-Pacific team partnered within a three-team alliance, also comprised of Pearl City High School and Rolling Hills, CA. The alliance was named the VRC Tournament Champions.

"Winning the tournament felt like all of the hard work payed off," said Skyler Sybounmy, 10th grade. "It was exhilarating!"

Both HS teams had been selected as alliance partners and made it into the playoffs. HS team 2932B was eliminated in the semifinals while the other team, 2932A made it on to win the finals 2-0, playing in the critical final match. This gave Mid-Pacific its first tournament champion banner and trophy! Governor Ige was on hand for the awards ceremony and final rounds.

All together, Mid-Pacific brought six teams (2 ES, 2 MS, and 2 HS). The MS and ES ended the first day in 15th and 16th place (only top 20 made the cut to final round), ultimately they didn't make it to the finals but had a great learning experience, according to Brian Dote, Chief Innovation Officer. "We discovered one of our MS students was fluent in Mandarin when they were paired with the team from China," he said. "They were able to converse over their strategy."

VEX and VEX IQ coursework and events allow students to flourish in a way that fosters both the technical and interpersonal skills necessary for students to succeed in the 21st Century.

"Parents told me that our competitors, many first timers, went home after the first day's matches excited, thinking of ways to improve, coming up with new driving strategies, etc," Dote said. "The level of engagement and critical thinking was intense! We also had tremendous support from our parents who helped us both days of the tournament. Competitive robotics teams just can't be successful without the support of the community and fortunately at Mid-Pacific we have that support and we are deeply appreciative!"

Pictured Above, L-R: Mr. Weyland K. Bailey, Instructor; Skyler Sybounmy, 10th; Esther Gracie, 9th; Tom Lyu, 9th.

Current status of the Mid-Pacific team:

1) Mid-Pacific high school VEX Team 2932A qualifies for Hawaii State VEX HS Championship January 4, at Keaau High School, Big Island. They will be competing against teams from across the state of Hawaii to win an invite to the 2017 VEX World Championships. Click here for information.

2) Mid-Pacific VEX Team 2932 qualifies for the 2017 CREATE US Open for Robotics in Council Bluffs, Iowa, April 6-8. Students will be competing against the best robotics teams from around the United States. Click here for information.

3) Mid-Pacific middle school VEX Team 29322A qualifies for Hawaii State VEX MS Championship January 6-7 at Stevenson Middle School. They will be competing against teams from across the state of Hawaii to win an invite to the 2017 VEX World Championships. Click here for information.