Help Cabrillo Middle School stay the best in engineering and music

The Rusty Sailors have invented a Microfiber Filter.

FIRST® LEGO® League has announced 20 semi-finalist teams that have advanced to the Eighth Annual FIRST® LEGO® League Global Innovation Award. The Rusty Sailors Robotics Team, from Ventura’s Cabrillo Middle School was selected from entries from more than 20 countries and all 50 states

for their outstanding project innovative solution that demonstrated originality while having the potential to add significant value in the world.

The Cabrillo Middle School Rusty Sailors have invented a Microfiber Filter for washing machines for the HYDRODYNAMICS? season, which focused on improving the water cycle and keeping microfibers out of the ocean’s waters and sea life. They collaborated with local scientists as well as developers at Patagonia to ensure their product would be a viable and responsible invention. This is the first time that a Ventura or Los Angeles regional team has advanced this far. The team will travel to San Jose June 19-21 to present their innovation to expert judges at San Jose State University, which culminates in the awarding of the top prize of $20,000 to continue work on their inventions; two runners-up will take home $5,000 each.

The Rusty Sailors have also been invited to participate in the FIRST LEGO League Razorback Invitational, at the University of Arkansas on May 16-20. The team will compete with their robot against 71 other teams from around the globe.

Coached by JD Sessa, the team is currently fundraising and looking for additional sponsors to assist them with travel, hotel and project/robot costs related to both of these events. Individuals can donate on their GoFundMe page at and companies who wish to sponsor can reach out to fundraising committee member and team parent, Marieanne Quiroz at Alternatively, purchasing wristbands (from somewhere similar to can be effective for fundraising. By putting the school name and logo on wristbands, it would be a lovely reminder of the fundraising efforts of all of the school.

FIRST LEGO League is an international program for 9 to 16-year-old children created in a partnership between FIRST and the LEGO Group in 1998 to get children excited about science and technology – and teach them valuable career and life skills. Children work alongside adult Mentors to design, build, and program autonomous robots using LEGO MINDSTORMS® and create an innovative solution to a real-world problem as part of their research project.

Accomplished inventor Dean Kamen founded FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to inspire an appreciation of science and technology in young people. To learn more about FIRST, go to

Jazz is alive and well at Cabrillo Middle School. Help support music at Cabrillo Middle School by attending the annual Jazz Benefit Concert on May 19, from 5:30-7:30 at Boccali’s Restaurant in Ojai. Tickets are $29 and include all you can buffet dinner and non-alcoholic beverages while sitting outside under the oaks listening to live jazz music from Cabrillo Middle School Students and a special performance by Lito Hernandez Fotet.

There is also a wine raffle and silent auction for many interesting items. All proceeds benefit the music program which pays for instrument repair, music tutors, sheet music, field trips, and more. Purchase tickets now at or at the door.

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