When will the club start?
The club will start over the summer soon after the end of school. We will begin with team formations as well as introductory activities such as learning the basics of VEX and the engineering design process before teams proceed to work on their robots.
When can I sign up?
We will be having at least two and potentially three "rounds" of sign-up periods. The first round will last from May 11th - June 4th. The second round will last from sometime in July to sometime in August, and will mainly be for rising ACL freshmen. Finally, the third round, which may or may not occur, will open after the start of school in September.
Although registration will be open during all rounds that occur, if possible, we recommend joining during the first round, as those who join in later rounds may not get the full benefit of our education on the many topics related to VEX nor will they get as much freedom in choosing their teammates (as we will need to integrate many new members into existing teams).
How will the club meet?
Once schools are open again for club activities, meetings will primarily take place at the Academies of Loudoun. During the Summer (if schools open by then), this might mean during weekdays or weekends, and during the school year, this would primarily be after-school, although before school and lunch meetings may also occur.
While we still must remain virtual, meetings will take place virtually. However, we will still make the club as engaging as possible during virtual meetings, and hopefully by the time teams are ready to build, physical meetings will be a possibility.
What equipment do you guys use?
All of our teams use the latest VEX V5 Competition Super Kits and use VEXcode Pro to code. Our teams also get access to various additional parts, batteries, etc., which we purchase as necessary. We are also planning on purchasing a full competition field sometime during the 2021 - 2022 season to better help our teams practice.
Do I need experience to join?
Nope! None at all! You do not need experience in coding, robotics, or anything else at all! We will teach it to you or learn it together! Just make sure to bring a willingness and dedication to learn, collaborate, and innovate.
Is there a club fee?
Unlike last season, we will be charging a fee this season. Because the fee requires calculations highly dependant on how many members we have, we will not be releasing the finalized number until June 6th, when we will have a better idea of how many members we will have. However, we currently estimate the fee to come to around $250. Additionally, returning members who were with us during the 2019 - 2020 Season and paid the $350 fee will receive a $50 discount from our fee this season.
We would also like to note that we will not be collecting this fee until the start of school next year. This is due to many factors, including the fact that we would like to give members some time to decide if they wish to genuinely commit before paying, as well as the reality that there is the possibility, however slim, that schools still may not reopen next year.
Will the deadlines/attendance be strict?
Yes. Through past experience, we have found that, unfortunately, it is very often the case that a few unproductive members will drag an entire team behind. Because of that, we are implementing much more strict deadline/attendance policies this season. However, we want to make clear that if you are a person who truly wishes to participate, you have nothing to worry about! We strive to make sure that all of our members can have the best experience possible and truly get to know the world of VEX. Our new policies are only in place so that those who wish to make progress are not deterred by those who are indifferent about it. We absolutely respect your other commitments but also hope you understand that we have requirements as well. Overall, if you know you will be dedicated, you will be fine.