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College of Arts and Sciences

Seton Hall Robotics Prepares for World Championships

Seton Hall Robotics team

Seton Hall Robotics team pictured at NJIT competition.

In their first full competitive season, Seton Hall Robotics has qualified for the 2024 VEX Robotics World Championships in Dallas, Texas. After a short run last season, Seton Hall Robotics was determined to take their team to the world championships this year. Given that the thirteen-person team started their competition in early February of this year, they had more than a semester to work together to build a stronger robot. The team’s hard work paid off over Spring Break when they dominated the competition at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Winning a staggering five out of six of their matches, Seton Hall Robotics was the number two seed heading into the eliminations round.

Robot "Big Steppa"

Robot "Big Steppa" pictured at NJIT competition.

In the skills section of the competition, the team only had 60 seconds and three tries to drive the robot, which they named “Big Steppa”; show off their skills; and win as many points as possible. The team was able to score an unbeatable 149 points in that section alone. While the Pirates were an all-around impressive team, they exhibited remarkable ability in the skills section of the competition. Though the Pirates faced challenges during the autonomous section of the competition, they had an impressive comeback during the third round and added to their collection of points. Relying on the masterful coding capabilities of freshman Computer Science major, Ethan White, the team was able to secure their spot in the finals. Seton Hall Robotics had an impressive robot skills score of 223 points, which ranks 18th out of 350 teams worldwide. The Pirates experienced great success at NJIT, earning an amazing second-place finish behind only Rochester Institute of Technology.

Robot "The Cube"

Robot "The Cube" pictured at NJIT Competition.

At the beginning of the season, Founders Ayden Frechette and Shane Fusco set their sights on making it to the World Robotics Championships. Admittedly, they said it “seemed a bit ambitious, but with their advisors, Erie Morales, Ph.D., and Mehmet Alper Sahiner, Ph.D., and the support of Dean Jonathan Farina, Ph.D., and the Student Government Association, their dreams have become a reality. In the spirit of servant leadership, the Robotics Team gives back to the community by volunteering at local high schools and youth robotics clubs. At the end of April, the following students will travel from South Orange, New Jersey, to Dallas, Texas to compete in the World Robotics Championships; Ayden Frechette ‘25, Shane Fusco ’25, Edwin Baiden ‘25, Andrew Kurtz ‘25, Kyle Finnan ‘25, Kylee Wtulich ‘25, Joseph Garrett ‘26, Ethan White ‘27, David Garcia ‘27, Jocelyn Buendia ‘27, Jeddidiah Saezhong ‘27, Alexandra Caroll ‘27, Justine Fallurin ’27.

Students interested in coding, engineering, or other aspects of robotics should contact President Ayden Frechette ([email protected]). The Robotics Team is part of the STEM Initiative, an array of investments in the interdisciplinary sciences at Seton Hall, including new faculty hires, updated laboratories, student funding, and experiential learning opportunities, as well as new programs like the M.S. in Applied Physics and Engineering and multiple 5-year B.S. plus M.S. programs in STEM.

Categories: Nation and World, Science and Technology