5 girls winning robotics championshipWe have a lot to celebrate thanks to our great kids, amazing staff, and the generous support of our donors and local business sponsors! Here is our brag list:

  • Added MakerSpace Workshops at both middle schools – In partnership with District 97, we had MakerSpace Workshops at both Brooks and Julian this spring. These free workshops allowed students to create fun and imaginative projects using tech, electronic, and traditional workshop tools.
  • Piloted In-House League at Julian – This pilot program was a big hit. It’s designed for students who are new to VEX Robotics or who can’t commit to the long season of our Competitive Club. Students met once a week over 9 weeks to build a small robot and then compete in our new League competition, Robot Rumble.
  • Increased competition opportunities for students – In 2015-2016, we taught Heritage Middle School (Berwyn) and Elm Middle School (Elmwood Park) how to set up and run a scrimmage. This year those schools hosted official tournaments that we attended.
  • Hosted 2 large tournaments – We not only hosted our annual Battle of the Bots Tournament in February, but also the 2018 Illinois Middle School VEX Robotics State Championship.
  • Won more awards than ever – A record 13 OPEF VEX Robotics teams qualified for and competed in the 2017 State Championship, winning 8 awards—the most of any program in the state!
  • Served more students in more ways than ever – Thanks to our Competitive Club, MakerSpace Workshops at both schools and pilot In-House League, we served 200 students this year. That is almost 50% more students than last year!

We are already making exciting plans for the 2017-18 season, when we’ll be tackling the new VEX Robotics Challenge Game, In the Zone. Announcements for our 2017-2018 season recruitment will be posted on the OPEF VEX Robotics and D97 middle school websites by August 23, 2017.