Label caught up with two members, Ed Hodges (Chair) and Miles Bennett (Media), of one of Loughborough’s new societies at the Bazaar yesterday to see how they’re finding Society life.
Why did you found Fighting Robot Society, what do you do which is different?
Ed: We figured it was an interest to a lot of people which they wouldn’t normally get to fulfill; Loughborough University has the perfect tools to accomplish that.
How often do you meet up?
Ed: We normally meet up once a week, on Wednesday afternoons in the STEMLab.
Miles: But you can use the STEMLab at any time, as long as there isn’t any teaching going on in there.
How have you found being a new society?
Ed: It’s been very challenging, especially getting used to the Union Constitution; everything that you have to adhere to has been… interesting. But it’s definitely helped us with our organisational skills.
Miles: Yeah, it’s taught us skills that we probably wouldn’t have gained doing other things.
What has been your biggest challenge this year?
Ed: Getting engagement. As we’re a new society, getting our name out there is really hard, but we’re working on it through our social media presence. We hope to gain more clout to contact companies for support and sponsorship for events.
(To Miles) As Media Rep for the society, how have you personally found that?
Miles: It’s been a little bit challenging at times getting used to advertising our society and all that, but we’re trying to grow our Instagram by posting regularly. Getting the content for that can be difficult at times, but, were growing!
Do you have any events coming up? Or do you go to others’ events?
Ed: Yes. We have a couple of bots entered for a competition on the 24th of February, which we need to prove they can move for by the 10thof February, so that’s currently our main challenge. We’re also organising an event for April; we’re looking to hold events every two months or so during term time.
Miles: We want to branch out and get involved with the general fighting robot community as well, including host events alongside them.
Ed: And reach out to educational institutions to get people interested in robotics and engineering from a younger age.
What are your big plans for the rest of this year?
Ed: Currently, as I say, the events. We’re also trying to get together our own arena so that we can host events on our terms. We’ve also put plans in place for a 2020 event, to host heavyweight robots at Loughborough to grow the university’s presence in the national and international scene of combat robotics.
Do you think the University and Union will support you with that?
Ed: Yes, we have already been in talks with them about it.
Why should people get involved?
Ed: Cause it’s cool, who doesn’t want to build robots? It’s for anybody who saw the show and took an interest. It’s not something you’d normally get a chance to do yourself and can be a very expensive hobby to get into from a certain point: you have to buy a certain number of tools, but we have all of these tools provided to us by the university, which we’re very grateful for.
Miles: It brings together likeminded people who have the same hobby, you can make friends, and learn another skillset that you haven’t had a chance to put into practise before.
Any final thoughts?
Shout out to Nupur and Guilia who are great and super helpful.
Featured image by: Amie Woodyatt
Image used in header by: Miles Bennett