Two Local Students to Compete in Underwater Robotics Competition

Both Attend Buddy Taylor Middle School


Two students at Palm Coast's Buddy Taylor Middle School have earned entries into an underwater robotics competition taking place across the country next month. The International SeaPerch Challenge is being held at the University of Maryland on May 31st and June 1st this year.

The contest opens up entries to elementary, middle, and high school students across the country, with a series of different events being scheduled across both days. The two participants representing BTMS are Nathan Cabrera and Sophia Costa, both of whom beat out their classmates to punch their tickets to Maryland.

The SeaPerch program familiarizes students with the engineering and technology behind the building of underwater Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV), which can conduct studies and collect data beyond what's often practical for a human-piloted vessel. The students learn engineering, science, and design with robotics, and hone skills such as "critical thinking, collaboration, and creativity" according to a statement by Flagler Schools.

BTMS offers a SeaPerch program advised by Tracy Jones. The team of Cabrera and Costa competed in the Greater Jacksonville SeaPerch competition on April 13th, leading a sweep of the first three spots by all-BTMS students. The runner-up team was comprised of Bradley Roe, Luke Chrzanowski, and Lucas Strunk, while the third place team consisted of Gabriella Burkhalter and Christopher Jones.