On oct 13th 2017, the FKL Knights made history by doing what no other Lane football team has been able to do, go 5-0.

The FKL Knights dominated against Mott Haven, who had recently moved down from the second best division in the PSAL.

Before this game, people doubted the Knights because the team had been relegated to the lowest division of the PSAL for the previous 2 years and the conventional wisdom was that Mott Haven, despite having been moved down, would still easily defeat FKL.

On our way to the game the team was excited, but nervous at the same time.  We got amped up listening to music on the bus and by the time we reached the field, the adrenaline was pumping and we felt confident. It must have shown through because when the crowd got its first look at us, it seemed shocked; I even heard someone in the crowd remark that Mott Haven, their own team, was going to lose.

Five minutes till kickoff, coach Jason had a talk with us.  He told us how much this game really meant for the team.  We 4-0 and Mott Haven was 2-2.  We thought if we lost we would just end up being one more okay football team; we wanted to be more than just okay.

This was it.  It was time for kickoff.  We were on defense first.  On the 3rd play Mott Haven scored a TD.  The team was upset, but I was more than upset, being a captain.  I had to rally the team spirit, tell them “It’s not over! Do not give up! Keep fighting!”

So there we were on kick return, Omar waiting for the ball to come his way….he returned it and scored a TD for us.  Our spirit was up again, we went on the offense to score the 2 points succeeded. After that it was a defensive show.  Offense only got on the field for 2 point conversions and scored all of them.

By the time it was halftime the score was unbelievable, 40-6. Seeing that score up there made me proud and knowing that we were only 2 quarters away from being 5-0 told me that all the hard work we put in as a team had lead to this.

In the second half it was the same show.  Our offense barely got on the field because it was so unnecessary, and when we did, we scored.  Ultimately, we won.  The final tally was 56-20.  Which put us at 5-0.  

We made history in the greatest fashion possible.  We dominated another team on their field, during their Homecoming, in front of their crowd.  We went back home celebrating, with the biggest glow on our faces, happy that we finally went 5-0.




Mr. Donohue is a CTE department leader at the Academy of innovative technology high school. He started out working in a newsroom, publishing a website for a radio station, fifteen years ago.


Ever since he was younger Mr.Donohue took an interest in helping kids.  Even while employed in other fields he always worked with kids, for example he worked as a camp counselor; Boys’ and Girls’ club tutor; and coached and mentored kids.  Part of his inspiration for this might have been the fact that he also grew up with a large family actively engaged in the DOE. His mom was a teacher; grandfather a professor,one of his uncles was a teacher and eventually a principal, and the other was a professor.  It seems that for Mr. Donohue, becoming a teacher was inevitable. Even though he studied and got a degree at pace university, he taught himself things like html, css, javascript, and java. He learned all of these coding skills via online learning platforms, Flatiron School- which advertises a 3 month coding boot camp, and from other coders. To this day he is still learning new things from colleagues at the Flatiron school and people from ScriptEd- an organization that according to its website “equips students in under-resourced schools with the fundamental coding skills and professional experiences that together create access to careers in technology.” He is constantly engaged in expanding his knowledge in CTE and web development.


He started his teaching career in a different school than AoIT.  It was a zone school and the kids who attended did so, mostly, because they had to, not because they wanted to.  It wasn’t an active  choice and usually, when a child is not given a voice in decisions which affect him or her, it shows in the work they do and in their engagement, or more precisely, their lack of it.   


As Mr. Donohue pitched ideas on how to get kids in the school that wanted to be there and truly benefit from what he could teach, the school ignored his proposals and turned the other way. He saw that the school wasn’t really looking for change, so he began a search for a school that was.  In 2011 he went to a hiring fair for teachers and encountered the principle of The Academy of Innovative Technology, or AoIT- Ms. Cynthia Fowlkes. She loved what he was offering, and wanted for her school, exactly what Mr. Donohue was trying to accomplish. Since then he has worked very hard to bring in kids that want to come to AOIT, rather than kids who have to come here. Now he is very happy to says kids are choosing to come to our school for all the right reasons, because they want to learn what is being taught here.  Many of the students currently attending selected AoIT based on  their participation at one of the city’s high school fairs, where they got a chance to see everything that AOIT has to offer; programs such as: web design, computer repair, game design, graphic design, and robotics.  


Mr. Donohue is very happy on how the school has progressed over the past six years. When he first started here there were only two Computer labs,  his room looked really broken down and had out of date computers. In addition, coding wasn’t being taught at the time.  Initially the main focus of his classes was advanced design view. However, when he took over as head of the CTE department, he brought coding in and now more than half of the classes we have to offer deal with acquiring coding skills that are in high demand in the world of technology. He also helped to build a robotics program which previously hadn’t existed at AoIT at all.  


Over the years Mr. Donohue has worked on expanding the school's corporate connections and technology partnerships so kids can have summer internships at tech related companies such as Verizon.  He has also committed himself to ensuring that AoIT’s tech program reaches a level rigorous enough that colleges would actually acknowledge and accept the credits students receive from AoIT computer classes. One such college that has already agreed to this is St. Joseph’s college.


As much as he has accomplished, Mr. Donohue’s work is far from done.  The next step in his vision for our school is to build a program where the credits received here can carry on to every New York State CTE college.  This would be a great benefit to the school, helping to attract even more talented students, and continue AoIT on its trailblazing path.      


VARSITY FOOTBALL - October 8, 2017

AoIT - 36  Alfred E. Smith 12

AOIT VS. Alfred E. Smith H.S


AOIT's Franklin K Lane Knights continue to show their dominance on the field as brothers, victors, and future leaders. 


Victory by Storm

The FKL knights destroyed the opposition In a heart racing match of Honor and Bravado.

shaq hurdle.jpg

Rising to the challenge

Faster than a speeding bullet, able to leap over obstacles in a single bound!  Yes, AoIT's quarterback!


The Academy of Innovative Technology (AOIT) is a school on the Franklin K Lane campus that specializes in providing students with the training necessary to perform well in the technology field.  At AOIT you can expect to find 3 different programs, pertaining to technology, that are being taught to students.  Those programs are: computer repair, graphic design and web design.

In their freshman year of highschool students are exposed to all three programs, allowing them to gain enough experience in each, that they are able to choose which department they would like to focus on, and progress toward certification in.

The computer repair department specializes in the hardware aspects of a computer system and how to resolve the many problems that might affect a computer system’s performance, as well as its network, and printer capabilities.  

In this program students start by getting introduced to the subject of computer hardware.  They engage hands-on in hardware repair, learning what professional technicians do when working on computers.  Students also explore different job opportunities that become obtainable with certification.  A+, the computer repair certification exam,  is  included as part of the curriculum.   A passing grade on the A+ certification exam represents the student’s successful completion of the program.

           My time in the computer repair program has been very challenging, but fun.  Mr. Alphonse, who teaches computer repair, has invested a lot of hard work and effort to ensure that, as students, we receive the content necessary to study for the certification exam.  The next batch of students scheduled to take the exam will be taking it in April.  


Robotics Tournament First Tech Challenge by Matthew Nunez & Samad Hussain

In Robotics Class, we work together in order to create robots.  The class is divided into two collaborative groups: one is in charge of programming the robot; the other helps to build the robot. 

The students programming the robot work via computer to write the code that will control the robot. 

The builders, on the other hand, have two tasks.  The first task is to construct the arena, in which the robot will perform.  The arena, in short, is a giant square, that contains two huge wooden balls at its center; one red and one blue.  Planted between the balls is a T shaped structure with a platform built onto either end of the T.  The platforms are built with the ultimate purpose of holding the balls.  One is painted blue and is stationed above the ball of the same color.  The other platform is painted red and is stationed above the red ball.  Once the arena is completed, the builders move onto their second task, which is to build the robot. 

While this is taking place, the programmers continue to work with Java to write the code that will tell the robot what to do.  In order to help them do this, the programmers use the application: Android Studios.  This application is essential, as it is compatible with the phones, which function as remote control devices for the robots.  The programmers must code every single detail of what the robot will be capable of in order for it to function properly.  The builders must work in conjunction with the programmers to ensure that the robot is physically capable of performing the functions they are encoding it with.

 The robots are constructed according the rules set forth by FTC- First Tech Challenge, and cannot not surpass 18 inches by 18 inches.  Currently we have completed the coding and construction of two robots.  Each one has different capabilities that can garner vast amounts of points and which in turn would help us to remain in the competition for as long as possible.

For the last three months, the First Tech Challenge was the main goal of our robotics class.  Mr. Santana, a CTE Teacher, and Mr. Schmidt, a Math Teacher together head up the robotics program at AoIT and they decided that we should make 2 robots for the competition. 

Students Nyja Daniels, Matthew Nunez, Charles Williams and Elijah Rivera worked hard, under the supervision of Mr. Schmidt, in order to build the arena and robots.

Mr. Santana was in charge of the programmers group. That group was a smaller one, and consisted of myself, Samad Hussain, and Xavier Matos. 

At first, we were faced with a number programming errors, some known, some unknown.  After about a month, the engineering team had finished building their first robot and yet we had had no success with the programming.

Later, we figured out that part of the reason we were running into so many brick walls, was because the computers we had been using were too outdated for what we needed to do. 

If our goal was to be done in time to compete in the First Tech Challenge, we had to find a way to knock down some of those walls we were running into, and soon.  With time slipping away, a decision had to be made on how to tackle this major hurdle.  Ultimately, Mr. Schmidt was able to find sufficient funds to order some brand new computers, which then enabled us to properly program the robot’s functions.

Those new computers were all set but one error (which was not letting us to send the codes to the robots) was preventing our success. Then Schmidt called Mr. Aaron (programming teacher in Donohue’s class) to see if he can solve the error. Aaron gave it a hard try and he fixed it in 2 days. We started programming by making the codes to run those robots.

The First Tech Challenge of robotics was held on sunday 01/15/17. Nyjah Daniel, Charles Williams, Mathew Nunez and myself were the drivers of the robots.  Xavier and Mr. Schmidt were the coaches. Team AoIt played like a pro, and achieved 2nd place out of 20 in the tournament.

Robotics 2.png


Friday, January 6, was Alumni Day.  A day on which past students that graduated from AoIT, came back to share their lives after high school and their college experiences, to help current students prepare for after we graduate.

It was generous of these former students to take the time out of their busy schedules to come and share their struggles with us and it was definitely something I benefitted from.  

One alumni said that college is a great experience and that everyone should take the opportunity to go, but you have to take the work seriously and be responsible because the professors won’t be on your back asking for the work, like they do in high school.  If you choose not to do the work, it’s on you, and since you’re the one paying for your education, you’ll be throwing away your money, time and opportunities with both hands.  

Another alumni said that college is one of the best times in a person’s life because you get to meet, socialize and share with so many people who are going through the same journey as you.

Many also pointed out that if even if you’re not planning on going to college you shouldn’t completely rule it out.  It’s possible to attend a two year college which doesn’t require as long of a commitment as a 4 year school and is much less expensive.  This way you can at least try it out and see if  college can be a good fit for you.  If it’s something that you decide does work for you, then you can transfer to a four year college.  

This is also a good option for students that don’t know what they want to do.  College gives you options and opens up opportunities to you that aren't available in high school.  

Even in a four year college, you have until your sophomore year to decide what you really want to major in.

Alumni day was a good experience. Hearing what the previous students had to say provided current students with the motivation they needed to do better now.  It helped us understand how to be successful when we get to college; that we need to take all the experience we can get, add hard work, and we will achieve.  

When you enter the real world, there is no going back, only moving forward.


ALUMNI DAY by Matthew Nunez


On January 6, 2017, last year’s seniors, as well as, graduates from previous years that are now attending college, came back to give some advice about their post high school journey. Their experiences gave us a better understanding of college- from living on campus to interacting with different cultures, older people and professors.  

During the event I gained more knowledge about financial aid as well as student loans.  

There was a panel of around 9 AoIT graduates who came back to share their personal experiences.  

After the event ended, I went to stand with a group of students that had crowded around Nimrod Martinez (“aka Tito”), and listen to what he had to tell us.  Tito was a former AoIT student who played football for the Franklin K. Lane Knights. He was very social and well known amongst the student body.  He had a number of close friends that he still keeps in touch with.  Tito gave us three important tips to follow in order to make a great start at college.  Tito currently attends a college in Florida.

The first piece of advice he gave was to talk with teachers.  One reason this is a good idea, he said, was because it could make our lives easier by providing extra help on a particular subject or extra time on an assignment.  

Tito also talked about living on campus and how a lot of people told him that it wasn’t a good idea to leave NY since Suny colleges are more expensive. However, he told us, one of his goals was to gain experience away from home. His philosophy is that you only live once and that if you want to reach your goal, in the process of pursuing it, you have to be willing to make some risky decisions, even if other people reject those choices.  

Another topic he talked about was about responsibility. Tito explained that becoming an adult  isn’t about turning a certain age, it’s about learning to be independent.  

Leaving your comfort zone and challenging yourself is an essential part of expanding and maneuvering your world.  You have to learn to speak with other individuals in order to feel comfortable on campus as well as learn to accept advice from them that would be helpful.  This made me reflect because, although you never know who can help you, generally, good advice comes from people who have more experience, such as, upperclassmen, and even, professors but only if you make the choice to approach and talk to them.  

I was grateful for the chance to hear what our past AoIT graduates had to say. Nimrod’s message about broadening our social circles and learning to interact outside of the classroom  with people that, normally, we wouldn’t, as well as listening and taking to heart good advice when it’s given, stuck with me.  I intend to keep this knowledge with me, knowing that I'm going to need it soon and that I will be putting it to use, not just once I get to college, but also on my journey to college.  Nimrod’s advice has definitely given me a helpful perspective, but it can also help others to make better decisions as we approach the end of high school.  


AoIT STUDENT ELECTIONS by Angela Zapata & Stephanie Bonilla


The Student Elections at AoIT took place in November.  It is an event where students gather the courage to put themselves forward as candidates for positions like President, Vice President, Treasurer, etc..  They do this in order to become representatives for the student body and to lead the school’s committees in the planning of activities.

In order to run for any position students must meet and maintain the following criteria:

  • 75% attendance or better

  • On track for June Graduation with a 75 or higher GPA

  • Continually set a good example as a member of the AOIT community

  • Being able to commit to attending Student Council meetings and events


President: a president is the leader of the student body.  He/She is in charge of the student council; guides the student council in identifying objectives and goals; presents those goals to the school administration and  oversees and plans school activities to help accomplish them.  

Vice President: The Vice President helps the president with anything that needs to be dealt with and takes over just in case the president is not available.

Treasurer: The treasurer keeps records of all financial transactions; gives a financial report at each Student Council/ Class meeting; aids fundraising possibilities for the Student Council/Class.

Secretary: Maintains the Student Council/Class files for future reference; keeps records of meeting minutes,agendas and attendance. Advises,coordinates, and works with all committees such as senior activities committee, yearbook committee, prom committee, fundraising committee, graduation committee, senior trip committee, etc.



Each Student gave a speech in front of the senior class.  They spoke on why they thought they would be the best person for the job.  As part of their campaigns they also put up flyers throughout the school publicizing their candidacy and their vision in hopes of  persuading others to vote for them.


Nominees for president were:


Anthony Gomez

Charles Williams

Ashanique Palmer

Elected Student Body President - Matthew Nunez

“My daily life has been a major struggle, but I will keep struggling until I achieve my goal!”



Latiq Pratt

JAZMIN REID (winner)



  • Candidates running for Secretary

Ashanique Palmer (winner)

Jazmin Reid


  • Candidates running for Treasurer

Joseph Ortiz

Latiq Pratt (winner)

Jazmin Reid


  • Candidates running for Representative

(Top 6 who garner the most vost will become Reps)

Ashanique Palmer

Wander Gomez

Yery Genao

Angela Zapata (winner)

Carlos Martinez (winner)

Khalique SimsMcfarlane (winner)

Nyjah Daniel

Serina Debidin (winner)

Joseph Ortiz

Anthony Gomez

Lily Rose Ahmed (winner)

Keyana Cruz (winner)

Adrian Pena (winner)