SFHS Robotics Team Places 4th in the World at the 20th MATE ROV Competition

Robotics Team Places 4th in the World at the 20th MATE ROV Competition

St. Francis Catholic High School is proud to announce our robotics team placed fourth in the world at the 20th annual Marine Advanced Technology Education Remotely Operated Vehicle World Championships (MATE ROV) in Long Beach, Calif. earlier this summer. Along with their world title, the Geneseas placed first in Marketing Display and earned the Oceaneering Health, Safety and Environmental Award.

The all-girls team, known as the Geneseas, consists of eleven students who work year-round and have varying roles on the team.  The Geneseas are coached by Kitara Crain and Marcus Grindstaff. Kitara is also a Validation Engineer at Intel Corporation.

Robotics is considered an academic team where students gain experience in engineering, marketing and research while building their underwater ROV and preparing for competitions.

“It’s such an inspiration to see these incredible young women applying their STEM talent, creativity and passion to build an award winning robotics team and establish the legacy of competitive robotics at St. Francis High School,” Geneseas assistant coach and St. Francis parent Marcus Grindstaff said. 

Head coach Kitara Crain added, “This team is growing into some truly remarkable engineers as they conquer the real world problems of the MATE competition. It doesn’t get more exciting as a coach than watching the robot hit a major complication, thinking to myself ‘what could have caused this?’, and then looking up to realize the team has already recognized the problem, analyzed possible reasons for failure, and are working as a team to debug and solve the issue to get the robot back in the water.”

According to Grindstaff, this is just the beginning for these talented young women. “Stay tuned. We’re just getting started!”

Nearly 50 in-person teams from across the globe and 12 telepresence teams participated in the competition. For the 20th annual event, students were challenged to create ROVs and related technologies to support work to combat climate change, provide clean energy, feed the growing global population, monitor ocean health and preserve maritime history.

In addition to its underwater successes in Long Beach, the Geneseas participated in a collaborative bonus mission with Husky Explorers from Newfoundland, Canada and CityU from Hong Kong.

SFHS Press Release Robotics 2022