Robotics Club, one small step to NASA | Seton Catholic Preparatory

Robotics Club, one small step to NASA

Posted on Sep 29 · Filed in Alumni

It’s not easy catching up with Kate McBryan from the Seton class of ’03. When she’s not busy working on her PhD in Aerospace Engineering at the University of Maryland, she’s testing the dynamics of a moving robotic arm and a satellite base in zero gravity. Kate and a team of engineering colleagues designed, built and operated the Dynamic Manipulator Flight Experiment during a flight on NASA’s DC-9 “Weightless Wonder” airplane.

To Kate, the chance to defy gravity was one small step on her journey from Seton’s Robotics Club to fulfilling her dream to someday work with space robots at NASA. Meanwhile, she’s gone back to her high school Robotics Club roots, volunteering as a mentor at Seton and for FIRST Robotics Competitions. She loves nothing more than hanging out with all the robots and the high school students in a fun competitive environment!      

When mentoring the Robotics Club kids at Seton, Kate learned an important lesson: Mentors don’t always have the right answer; they have ideas just like the students. It’s Kate’s passion to nurture students’ ideas to solve problems. She credits Seton Robotics for helping her to gain confidence, collaborate on a team and manage the impossible—building game-playing robots (that work!) on tight deadlines for competitions.   

For many high school students, clubs are a vibrant part of campus life, an opportunity to explore what interests you. At Seton, it’s required that all students join at least one club. So, join a club today! You just never know where your club experience will take you.       

In the photo (l to r): Chris Carlsen, Nicholas Limparis and Kate McBryan on the DC-9 “Weightless Wonder.” Photo courtesy of NASA. 

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