Haitian Teens Earn Spot in Robotics Contest With Winning Robot

Can you say "resilient"?

Members of the It Takes a Village winning team (Chapman for News)

New York's Daily News is reporting that a robotics team from It Takes A Village Academy in Brooklyn, N.Y., has won a berth in a prestigious science competition in St. Louis, Mo. The team, made up almost entirely of Haitian immigrants, are still ecstatic because their robot took first place in a competition at the Javits Center by outperforming robots from 63 other schools from around the country, including major New York City schools such as Stuyvesant and Dalton.

The article highlights Margely Saint-Pierre, 17, whose high school in Haiti was destroyed in last year's earthquake. "It's like a dream come true," said Margely, 17, who saw 10 friends die in the aftermath of last year's earthquake before his parents sent him to stay with his uncle, a police officer who lives in Brooklyn. The junior, with an 80 average, is just one of a dozen students on the school's robotics team who emigrated from Haiti -- half of them since the earthquake.

Now that they have won the berth, they need to raise money to get to the St. Louis science competition to show and prove their mettle. It will cost about $15,000 for the It Takes a Village team to attend the three-day robotics competition, which starts on April 27.

These teenagers are demonstrating that tragedy does not have to define you. They have pulled together and made it clear that they can compete and are here to win. There's nothing robotic about that resilient spirit at all.

Read more at the Daily News.

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