VEX U-new team development

Similar to last year, this thread will be used to help students find other students that wish to start teams at colleges or universities in the USA. Here are a few facts about last season. A total of 42 teams were registered by 39 different organizations, with 22 of them (marked with an asterisk) attending the VEX College World Championships.

Here is the list by;

*]Organization - City, State
DeVry University - Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix College - Phoenix,AZ
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Prescott, AZ
Scottsdale Community College - Scottsdale, AZ
Arizona State University - Tempe, AZ

  • Orange Coast College - Costa Mesa, CA
  • CSUN Vex robotics - Northridge, CA
    El Camino College - Torrance, CA
  • Mt. San Antonio College - Walnut, CA
    Los Angeles Pierce College - Woodland Hills, CA
  • University of Florida-ASME - Gainesville, FL
    no name - Palm Bay, FL
    Automation Direct - Cumming, GA
    Mercer University - Cumming, GA
  • Honolulu Community College - Honolulu, HI
    Northwest Nazarene University - Nampa, ID
  • University of Illinois Champaign Urbana - Urbana, IL
  • Purdue University West - Lafayette, IN
  • College of Southern Maryland - La Plata, MD
  • UMASS-Lowell - Lowell, MA
  • Quinsigamond Community College - Worcester, MA
  • Michigan State University - East Lansing, MI
    St Cloud Technical & Community College - St Cloud, MN
  • Northland Community and Technical College - Thief River Falls, MN
  • Vaughn College of Aeronautics & Technology - Flushing, NY
    City College of New York - Manhattan, NY
  • New York Institute of Technology - Old Westbury, NY
  • Marion Technical College - Marion, OH
  • Northeastern State University College of Education - Tahlequah, OK
    Muhlenberg College - Allentown, PA
    Temple University - Philadelphia, PA
    Temple University - Philadelphia, PA
  • North American Robotics - Philadelphia, PA
    University of Texas - Austin, TX
    University of Houston - Houston, TX
  • FEARLESS Robotics Competition Club - Richardson, TX
  • FEARLESS Robotics Competition Club - Richardson, TX
  • University of Texas - Tyler, TX
    Utah State Universtity Eastern Blanding - Blanding, UT
  • Utah State University - Logan, UT
  • Northern Virginia Community College - Manassas, VA

Small concentrations are beginning to show up in these regions, Southern California and Arizona, Texas, Baltimore MD and Philadelphia, PA.

As new teams actually register for the new VEX U program for the “Toss Up” season, I will post the organizations name and location so that those monitoring this thread can track the additions. Feel free to use this thread to also reach out to others to form new teams.

I would also like to reach out to the NAR team (North American Robotics) to explain to others how a virtual team can be organized and run when the students are all attending different schools in different states and countries. This did not prevent the team from putting together a great effort at the recent WC ending up as finalists to the champs from Mexico.

I have a few questions for NAR or other College teams.

I’m in high school for another year, but a good portion of our team is going to ASU and intend to join their Robotics team, hopefully bringing it to a world-competitive level. We’re already thinking for how to use paired robots that complement each other.

One problem they are facing is that I’ve been programming our robots for the last three years. None of them have any experience. They’re all brilliant mechanically, but have no idea how to write an effective autonomous routine. Is it a problem if I continue to program their robots? I understand that I am not permitted to drive, but legally we can’t find anything prohibiting me from doing it. I could coach, too, right?

Building on that, how hard is it to write a one-minute Autonomous mode? I’m assuming that sensors become much more important. How much time is spent on that compared to building the robots and practicing driving? If I was willing to drive to their campus, say, two or three times a week for three hours would we have a shot at being competitive?

Do you keep an Engineering Notebook? Is one necessary?

How do you qualify a VEXU team for Worlds? I don’t remember seeing any College Competitions at all being run on Robot Events.

We’ve been thinking about starting up a mini collaboration between UBC, SFU and BCIT here in BC. The only problem is getting people to actually start a “chapter” at each school (ಠ_ಠ).

If you’re a year behind, just skip a grade :smiley:

There’s no real rules saying that anybody else can’t help design/build a robot - that’s why mentors are possible. Go crazy.

At the university level, you should not only be keeping an engineering notebook, but you should start understanding why it’s really necessary and doing it “properly”. “Try it, break it, fix it, repeat” works well in Vex but it’s less forgiving in the real world when a design mistake costs thousands/millions.

Direct from Appendix E for the VEX U program rules in the section titled “Robot Rule Modifications” on page 2 item 6……

[INDENT]6. Each Robot is still only allowed up to two (2) operators and one (1) coach.
a. Drivers MUST be post-secondary school individuals.
i. Any individual enrolled in a post-secondary school is eligible to be a driver.
ii. There are no restrictions on who can be a Coach in VEX U.
iii. Professionals not enrolled in post-secondary education are also NOT eligible to be a driver.[/INDENT]

So just make sure the drivers are legal students taking college credit.

You want to start one at UBC? Awesome. That’s where I’m planning to attend college after next year, assuming I’m accepted.

This has been a legitimate plan. I’m short something like two credits, though, and I want to do the online HS challenges this year.

Alright. I saw that and assumed it was fine. Just wanted to make sure.

Auton, is really one big strategy as well. Considering it is half the match you can use auton to do lots of different things. Last year, NAR was pretty heavily defensive. Auton also gets harder/easier the more complex sensors and programming you would like to implement on your robot.

Yes, an engineering notebook is always necessary.

As of what I know now, you simply sign up. I’m not sure if VEX is planning on changing this, its really a question for the higher-ups at VEX, perhaps Marc could elaborate a bit?

One other thing that other college teams have that NAR doesn’t have is the school support (financially) so we spend a lot of our time looking for a sponsors and all you guys know how hard that is.

This post is to make prospective teams aware that the rules do allow different schools to partner with other schools to form a complete team. In other words two different colleges or universities may each build one of two robots and participate as a single team at an event. We hope this fact will allow others who are interested in getting involved to use this thread to post interest or seek others who want to partner.

As fall begins the VEX U teams in the USA are starting to register. The great news so far is that 6 of the 13 teams are new to the program. One of them is an expanding program adding a second* team, these are;

Team Name - Organization - City
Olivet Robotics Club - Olivet Nazarene University - Bourbonnais, IL
Purple Panthers - OHC STEM Club - Chicago, IL
NOVA Robotics - Northern Virginia Cmty College - Manassas, VA
NOVA Robotics - Northern Virginia Cmty College - Manassas, VA
NAR: MooseEagles* - North American Robotics - Philadelphia, PA
Tech-Know Commando - Worcester Polytechnic Institute - Worcester, MA

Returning teams that are eager to get a jump on the Toss Up season are;

Team Name - Organization - City
Spartan Robotics - Michigan State University - East Lansing, MI
Team Hawaii Robotics - Honolulu Community College - Honolulu, HI
Rice Robotics - Rice University - Houston, TX
Talons - College of Southern Maryland - La Plata, MD
NAR: MooseEagles - North American Robotics - Philadelphia, PA
Kodiak Robotics - Phoenix College - Phoenix, AZ
ELCROC - El Camino College - Torrance, CA

Remember that you can track team growth by using the “map search” function in Robot Events and filtering for VEX U teams in the USA.

All teams should be very aware of some key dates that will affect their ability to register for the VEX U World Championship.

Capacity at the next WC will likely be limited and these guidelines will be used to populate the event.


  • The VEX U WC will open for registration in early October with a capacity of 50 teams. Half of these spots (25) will be reserved for international participants.
  • Event registration will be open to all teams on a first come first serve basis up until December 20, 2013.
  • A wait list will open as soon as the event reaches capacity.
  • VEX U WC event will expand to 2 divisions with a capacity of 40 teams each (80 teams total) if registration interest reaches at least 70 teams (via the wait list) by January 21, 2014.
  • Priority will be given to wait-listed teams that have participated in an official VEX U event prior to February 15, 2014 if capacity is still less then total demand.
  • Wait listed teams will be notified by March 1, 2014 if they will receive an invitation to the VEX U World Championship.

This early growth % in teams if maintained will put some real pressure on getting game play experience in regional tournaments and simply committing early to attending the World Championship event.

Is this page being used to show new teams from the world or just the USA?

Awesome, a lot of new teams this year. A new NAR Team as well.

It’ll be good competition this year, I’d actually like to see multiple divisions this year.

Also as a note, anyone who remembers team NVCC from last year, we have now changed to team NOVA!

I was intending to focus mostly on the USA but if we bring new countries into the program, I can use this to let people know about it. The map search function has the ability to track all the teams in the world as well.

I’m starting a team here at the Air Force Academy

Fantastic, I had the thought this summer that it would be really cool to have the 4 service academies all with VEX U teams and arrange a mini tournament between them as part of an event. When you think about how the Army and the Navy are supporters of VEX (along with Air Force) we just need the Coast Guard Academy to join in for the experience. There could be a fun day of round robin play for the pride of the service engineers!

Welcome back team “BLRS” Boiler Robotics of Purdue University.

A new team called Retriever Robotics from Baltimore, Maryland as team “RR”.

I remember that one year (I think it was Gateway) the Coast Guard was a sponsor of VEX

Are you sure? I was talking to a Coast Guard recruiter about it and he said that they haven’t had a connection to VEX.

where is this team located in Baltimore Maryland, what school?
since I live in towson and no local college has a team.

I have asked the person who registered this team to contact you either through this forum or directly.