The UT Amateur Radio Club (UTARC) recently participated in a competition called the ARRL School Club Roundup last month. Several UTARC members spent their time in the radio shack working on this contest. The Roundup is a co-sponsored event by the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) and Long Island Mobile Amateur Radio Club (LIMARC).
In the contest, schools compete against each other to obtain as many “contacts” as possible within an allotted time. An amateur radio contact is an exchange of information between two amateur radio stations. The exchange usually consists of an initial call, a response by another amateur radio operator at an amateur radio station, and a signal report.
In addition, there are multipliers used to increase the points accumulated during the contest. Different modes or types of communication, such as voice, code, or computer, have various values used to multiply the points earned. Other criteria that use multiplier values include the number of US states contacted, the number of Canadian provinces contacted, and the number of schools and amateur radio clubs contacted. The contest is held on all amateur radio bands or frequencies except 60, 39, 17, and 12 meters bands.
The School Club Roundup is held twice a year, in February and October and runs Monday through Friday. The logs of recorded contacts are submitted to LIMARC for tabulation. LIMARC determines the winner with the most contacts and the results are posted in the ARRL’s magazine, QST.
The competition features four classes of competitors: elementary school, middle school, high school, and university. UTARC has participated the School Club Roundup several times, finishing as high as fourth place in the University category.