Author Archives: Lara Fernandes

Workshop POV

As a freshmen, this is my first time doing Robotics and the workshops would really help introduce me to what they do and how they do it.  I liked the fact that I got to experience a workshop and what a normal day in Robotics would look like. It provides you with the basic knowledge you need to join any of the committees. In electronics, I learned more about how they play a role in how a robot works and what it does. I hope to learn more about Robotics and the committees in future workshops. Go Janksters!

Zainah Masood

Class of 2021

2016 Scavenger Hunt

Scavenger Hunt featured image

Last Tuesday, December 6th, the Janksters had their annual downtown Scavenger Hunt! Organized by the senior members of the team, this Jankster tradition is a race against the clock and other teams to solve the puzzle first.

The team was split into seven different groups each with a leader and a packet of instructions. Starting at Notre Dame with the first hint, they made their way to different stations downtown from San Jose State University to Christmas in the Park. Each station had a different challenge for the group to complete before earning their hint to the next location and gaining more pieces for their puzzle. The games ranged from writing their own raps to assembling candy robots. During the Scavenger Hunt, there were opportunities to cut time from the final score through a Photo Scavenger Hunt which included taking selfies with a variety of object like squirrels or murals.

Once they finished the objectives at all seven stations, the groups raced back to campus to piece together their puzzle. It was an exciting competition and at the end, everyone came together for hot chocolate and snacks.

Check out some Jankster POVS about the event here!

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YWES 2016

I co-directed the Young Women Engineering Symposium with another senior, Rikako, this year. Seeing all my work for the past six months finally come to life was extremely rewarding. Rikako and I worked hard to get all the speakers and spread awareness about the event so to have 10 women engineers present and close to 90 attendees was amazing. The workshops I took a glimpse at were very interesting. I attended the previous two YWES and always emerged inspired so I hope the attendees this year did too. I really wanted to provide resources and let these girls know that there is so much opportunity and potential for them in STEM and I hope they felt empowered.

Minh-Chau Doan

Class of 2017

I had a fantastic time at this year’s Young Women’s Engineering Symposium. I took three workshops (Biomedical, Industrial, and Systems Engineering), which all were so knowledgeable, because I knew so little about these fields beforehand. I particularly liked Systems Engineering, in which I had the opportunity to hear from an employee at Intuitive Surgical who is working on the da Vinci robot.  As a senior on the team, it was great to see so many girls who are interested in STEM attending. All of the engineers really inspired me to pursue engineering as I enter college, and they gave unforgettable advice.

Rabab Karimjee

Class of 2017

Helping out at FLL

Volunteering at the First Lego League competition was an amazing experience in which I was able to bond with the other rookies and some veterans. The kids were positive and full of energy throughout the event. I was able to help in several parts, including taking photos, selling concessions, and helping with inspections. I went out of my comfort zone by talking to new people about their robots, all while having a fun time. Even though I was there for a long shift, the time flew by and I look forward to helping at FLL next year.

Elizabeth Fernandes

Class of 2020

As a new veteran my experience was different and interesting, and some of the roles I took on were things I never even realized had to be done. The new task that I had at the Intel FLL Tournament was being a field-resetter. At first when I saw that I was going to be doing an important job like this, I was honestly kind of worried. From experience in FRC I knew that this was a really important job and I was afraid I might mess something up by accident. When it was time for my shift to began, I went over to the competition field table, and seeing so many various lego constructions on that table, moving and being shuffled around every two minutes… did not reassure me. However like everything in FIRST and robotics in general, it seems scary but you honestly need to get used to it– and I did. After a few games of the referees showing me what to reset and look out for on the field, I got used to what I was doing and immediately began loving field reset. Ridding myself of those worries also gave me the chance to look at the brilliant FLL robots that each of the teams built and programmed, and it was very fascinating to see how the game challenge worked! (Also as field reset, I got to watch the games up close and in perfect view) In the end this year’s FLL tournament went great for all the teams competing, for the Janksters, and especially for me as I got to take on a new role and enjoy the tournament.

Shreya Basireddy

Class of 2019

At this year’s FLL competition, I was mentoring and coaching the Neon Nargals, an FLL team that Yashna and I started for our senior project.  Since this was their very first competition, they were all excited to present their themed project, compete with their robot, and show off their core values. The team learned a lot from competing, and they are very eager to implement new changes to the robot and to their themed project presentation.  One of the best parts of the day was during the awards ceremony when the team won the Core Values award and a ticket to advance to regionals.

Paulina Robles

Class of 2017

Space Systems Loral POV

Going on the Space Systems Loral field trip was a very interactive and
eye-opening experience, in the sense that I was able to understand a
lot more about how satellites were made. The main thing I learned was
how similar building a satellite- an object that goes up into space –
was to building a robot, which really blew my mind.

Anika Asthana

Class of 2020

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Competing at Chezy Champs

On September 24 and 25, I had the opportunity to attend my very first robotics competition, Chezy Champs, at Bellarmine. I had no idea what to expect, but from the moment I entered the room, I found the excitement electrifying. I spent my day doing so many different things, such as scouting, interacting with other teams, cheering in the stands, watching our robot compete, and pitching in and unloading the van at NDSJ after the competition was over. From rookies to veterans, we worked together as a team to accomplish our goals. It was rewarding to see that everyone’s contributions played a part in our placement in the quarter-finals.
Maddie Waldie
Class of 2020

Chezy Champs went really well for the Janksters. We didn’t lose robot communications once during the competition, and our robot scaled seven times. I spent the entirety of Chezy Champs in the pits, repairing the robot between matches and resetting the scaling mechanism. I really enjoyed getting to compete with “The Best of the West,” and I’m really proud that we held our own. I can’t wait to go again next year.

Julia Hunt

Class of 2018

Week 5 Build

Credit to Tamara Kawa

It is already Week 5 of Build Season, and the Janksters have been continuing their hard work on the robot.

The Electronics Committee has finished making vertical boards, mounting components on both of their boards, and wiring talons to the power distribution panel.

The Programming Committee has been busy coding, which they are currently testing and debugging.

The Mechanical Committee sub-groups have been busy:

Field Elements is working on bumpers and the robot cart handles.

The Scaling Committee has manufactured parts for their scissor lift and winch. They have also finalized their CAD and are putting together their parts.

The Chassis group has started putting the chassis together since they are finished CADing.

Finally, the Marketing Committee has been working on the standard, and they have almost finished making bows. They have started button production and are currently working on Robot Reveal Night preparations.

Thank you to all of our sponsors, mentors, and parents for all of your help and support!

Week 4 Build

Credit to Tamara Kawa

The Janksters have been working hard as Build Season continues. We are already into Week 4, and there has been a lot of progress.

The Electronics Committee has finished CADing for the sideboard and are finalizing the CAD for the vertical board. Right now, they’re working on mounting electronic pieces, such as the battery mount.

The Programming Committee has been presenting information on coding and making sure everyone is comfortable with deploying code. They have recently started writing the code for the robot.

The sub-groups of the Mechanical Committee have been keeping busy as well:

Field Elements has finished CADing for the robot cart.

The Scaling Committee has made progress with CADing the mounts and have finished CADing the main mechanism for the robot. They plan to start building this weekend and finishing the main mechanism.

Finally, the Chassis group has finished working on their gearboxes and have started working on the chains.

The Marketing Committee has continued working hard on designs. They completed robot reveal invitations  and are almost done with the team’s t-shirt designs.
There has also been progress on the team standard.

Thank you to all of our wonderful sponsors, mentors, and parents for helping us!