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Call outs and season start Vex Robotics

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While the official callout meeting for the Vex Robotics Competition (VRC) team was on August 17th if you even have a modicum of interest in the sport show up to one of their practices on any Wednesday after school.  Returning Coach Schlagenhauf and Coach Ford, coming from Franklin Central, are making a serious effort to bring intrigue and new players to the team before the season goes into full swing.

This will be the seventh year as a program and throughout the whole of it the Athletic Director, Josh Bowling, has been there helping behind the scenes. Seven years of watching the teams compete gave Coach Bowling a lot of insight into what makes the sport special. “The unique thing about Vex [is] you pretty much get to have a hand on everything. And so you can be someone that’s driving and building and coding… it teaches a lot of real-world skills that hopefully transition [into] kind of what students are interested in after high school,[or] after college.” Josh Bowling went into further detail about the team when asked about positive attributes Coach Ford and Schlagenhauf look for in future team members, “I think dedication is the big thing… Being able to work with teammates. Being able to kind of work through the design process. One of the great things about robotics is that it does teach you that you’re going to try a bunch of things and most [of] the time it is not going to work, but you continue to iterate and build until you find something that does work. So we are looking for someone who has that mentality of ‘I want to continue to always want to improve’…”

Another prominent figure involved in the PPHS Vex teams is Adrien Schlagenhauf, who is going on their third year on the team. A major struggle faced when it comes to recruitment is newcomers being too afraid to join if they didn’t have robotic experience. Adrien had this to say about the common occurrence, “We have so much fun on this team. It may seem scary … Maybe you are someone who doesn’t do math. No problem. I have friends that are awful at math. But, I’m like hey I know you love drawing and you’re like really creative. So you could join and come up with ideas or help manage our notebook. …Or maybe you are not very good at driving, but maybe you have a mind that’s perfect for programming and you can like do that.”

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About the Contributor
Carter Killilea, Journalist
Carter Killilea is a writer for PPHS Now in the class of 2025. Carter puts most of his energy into extracurriculars like football, volleyball, and robotics.Otherwise Carter is passionate about nature and the preservation of the ecosystem. Currently, Carter's post highschool interests lie in engineering and science, but regardless of his path, he hopes to succeed. Lastly, Carter has a strong disdain for poetry, speeches, taxes, and government.
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