By Tiffany Ta, Class of 2017
From August 10-13, the Janksters held their third annual Boot Camp, during which they helped run various workshops and activities to teach incoming freshman, sophomores, and juniors about all of the aspects of robotics, from build season to the team cultures.
From the moment they stepped in, the new campers were welcomed by the Janksters, helping warm them up with many icebreakers, such Never Have I Ever and even card games. Combined with lunches together and other fun activities, it was no surprise that the campers felt quite at home.
On the first two days, campers were divided into three groups and participated in a workshop rotation, in which each group would shift between workshops teaching marketing, tool use, Arduino, and CAD. From these workshops, the campers learned more about each aspect of what the various committees work on and discovered what interests they had.
The third and fourth days, however, were quite different. In the mornings, the campers would be split into two groups , attending either a workshop on driving, which explained the build season further in detail and allowed the campers to interact with the robot, or Rube Goldberg, where campers would design machines to release a balloon. In the afternoon, the campers could pick workshops that they enjoyed during the first two days and do even more activities in their workshop of choice.
The Janksters were more than happy to see these campers grow and develop their knowledge about robotics, and most of them confirmed that they were planning to join the team as future Janksters!
Boot Camp was a blast! This was my second year helping facilitate the workshops and activities, and I think the overall energy we got from the campers was great. My favorite part was when we went Downtown for lunch on Wednesday, because I was able to see who I’d get along with since they liked the same food as me (kidding), and we were able to relax and have some great conversations while eating on the grass in San Jose State. Most of the students who attended boot camp seemed to have a lot of fun. I can’t wait to see most of them during our robotics meetings this following year.
— Yashna Bansal
Class of 2017
Boot Camp is officially 3 years old! This year, it was full of energetic campers who were engaged and excited to learn. I look forward to seeing some of them come join this season! I got the opportunity to teach Arduino for the second year. During one of the free-choice sessions, I had one of the most rewarding experiences. There was a girl who struggled with understanding the logic behind code I was teaching her. After half an hour of trying countless methods and writing up plenty of notes, we finally figured it out together. Code and the logic behind is hard to grasp for those not familiar with it. To be able to teach it and know she understood was an amazing feeling!
— Minh-Chau Doan
Class of 2017