Needmore Robo Toppers surprised by assembly to recognize their accomplishments

NEEDMORE – After a successful trip to Dallas, TX last week for the VEX Robotics World Championship, the team members were greeted Monday morning by the entire school, congratulating them on their accomplishments.

Starting their practices in September of 2021, their Coach Mrs. Lu Kuehn set her expectations for the team, which went above and beyond what she could have imagined.

Welcome home to the Robo Toppers

“Starting this group in September, I could not have even imagined having our last practice for the season in May, let alone qualifying for the VEX World Championships,” said Kuehn. “Once we knew we were going to Dallas, I had set the goal of a top 10 finish, and these boys definitely surpassed that, and exceeded my expectations.”

NLCS Superintendent Dr. Ty Mungle, Director of Learning Maggie Dainton, and Director of Human Resources Christy Wintczak all made their way to the assembly

The two teams participated in two divisions, the Innovative and Arts divisions. Team 70632G finished 7th in the world for the Innovative Division, and the 70632F team placed 4th in the world in the Arts Division.

The school decided on Thursday, May 12th, they would host a welcome home celebration in the school gymnasium to cheer for them and congratulate them on their success, something the team had no idea was even happening.

Mrs. Lu Kuehn with the trophy that will be on display at the school

“We came up with the celebration last Thursday, where we would have the entire school set up in the gym and surprise the teams as they came back from a fake meeting with Mrs. Kuehn,” said Needmore Principal Susan Petty. “We had told the boys that they needed to prepare remarks for the newspaper, but instead it was to share with the other kids in the school, who want to be a part of this program moving forward.”

Trophies were given to the top three teams at the VEX World Championship. Needmore decided to get trophies made anyways for the team to display and remember their accomplishments

Each member of the team was awarded a trophy, two certificates (one from  State Rep. Chris May, and State Senator Eric Koch), a special trophy with their name and a ball used during the world championship tournament, and a main trophy that will stay at the school to remind them of their accomplishments. Nathan Tomlin also made a special trophy for Mrs. Kuehn, something she said she will cherish forever.

Students and Faculty during the surprise assembly

Mrs. Petty wanted to also thank the families, sponsors, NLCS School Board, Needmore Students, and team members for the success of the team and program this year.

Individualized trophies, the main trophy, one of the certificates, and the special trophy made for Mrs. Kuehn

“We couldn’t have done it without the help we received from everyone involved in this amazing journey. Thank you to this team for representing NLCS, Bedford, and Lawrence County by putting Needmore Robotics on the world map,” said Mrs. Petty.