Bay View Robotics team recognized by Governor and Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook


The St. Mary Academy – Bay View Robotics Team (S.M.A.R.T. 2.0) had the honor of being recognized by the Governor’s Office for their accomplishments at the FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) World Championship at a State House ceremony on Monday, May 22. The all-girls team from Bay View Academy, represented the State of Rhode Island at the international competition in St. Louis, Missouri which was held from April 26-29, topped 108 teams from 33 countries to place third for Inspiration in the Core Values Award. This award celebrates a team that is empowered by its FIRST® LEGO® League experience and displays extraordinary enthusiasm and spirit. AIR 4H, the FIRST Robotics Competition team from Aquidneck Island, was recognized as well. S.M.A.R.T. 2.0 was also given the opportunity to demonstrate their robot skills and to present their project which was based on the theme, “Animal Allies.” The team set about enhancing GPS for blind users, by outfitting seeing eye dogs with a vest that tells them which direction to turn. The idea is that the vests have three sensors, one on the left, one on the right, and one on the back towards the tail. The highlight of the afternoon, however, was a surprise visit with entrepreneur Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook and his wife, Dr. Priscilla Chan. The couple, who have created a non-profit organization called the “Chan Zuckerberg Initiative,” was meeting with the Governor to discuss education initiatives and to learn more about the State’s approach to personalized learning.