With physics teacher Allan Tumolillo as its advisor, the 12-member team designed, built and programmed a robot, entered the NJ Inaugural Qualifier tournament at Moorestown High School, its first competition, and received the “Innovate Award.”
According to the Qualifier tournament description, this award “celebrates a team that not only thinks outside the box, but also has the ingenuity and inventiveness to make its design come to life. Elements of this award include elegant design, robustness, and ‘out of the box’ thinking related to design.” The win at this tournament qualified the CHS team for the state competition. The CHS Club is supported by a grant from the Qualcomm Corporation and the Achieve Foundation.
Held at NJIT, State Championship FIRST Tech Challenge Tournament, now in its fifth year, was a day-long competition among 48 teams. The First Tech Challenge was designed to encourage students to consider the field of engineering and identify those New Jersey students who might consider engineering as a career choice.
In the championship competition, the teams were divided into two divisions. The teams programmed their robots to compete in five matches and Columbia finished the opening round ranking first in its division. As the leader in its division, Columbia won the privilege of selecting two alliance partners and formed the CHS Alliance Team, which went on to win the quarterfinals, semifinals and the championship rounds. As the Alliance Captain of the winning team, Columbia automatically qualified for the world championship tournament. The only other New Jersey team to qualify for the world championship was Edison after the judges selected it as the best all-around club.
Club members includ Kathleen Pineda, Cesar Munoz, Daniel Kison, Ben Reis, Kyle Robago Banjo, Ivana Thornton, Willem Lefevre, Eric Greene, Adam Richardson, Josh Greene, Haymant Ramlcissoon, and Stowe Hammarberg.