AKRON, Ohio — The St. Vincent-St. Mary robotics team has earned a spot in the world championship after recently winning the state title.
On Saturday, March 11, the Irish placed first at the Miami Valley FIRST Robotics Competition. After beating out 36 other robotics teams in Ohio, the Akron team earned a spot in the World Championship, which will be held April 19-22 in Houston, Texas.
The team is comprised of five seniors, Anthony Chiera, Bella Dunlap, Owen Karl, Aidan Spoerndle and Brent Ujhazy, who have been on the team since their freshman year.
“After working with them during their freshmen year and watching their determination, I expected that they would make it to a state championship. Then Covid got in the way and slowed things down, but in the end, they prevailed and when they did make it to the championship this year they were unstoppable. I am very proud of their accomplishment and I will miss them after they graduate.” said Robotics team advisor Bob Engels.
Sophomores Sam Zayed and Moses Janolo, as well as freshman Daniel de Jong, are also a part of the team.
According to St. Vincent-St. Mary, The FIRST Tech Challenge is based on a sports model, where teams are tasked with designing, building and programing robots to complete a set of autonomous and remote-controlled tasks within a set of constraints.
At St. Vincent-St. Mary, the robotics program is designed for students interested in the STEM field.
"The importance of this program is that is allows students who may not think they were very good at science or math to discover an aptitude when challenged with a "hands on" type of project that involves scientific principles at the heart of engineering design," said Engels.
EDITOR'S NOTE: The video above previously aired on 3News on March 15, 2023.