To the person out there:
We understand that you may have questions for us. Hence, we have compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions. If you have other concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.
You guys are cool, where do I sign up?
If you are a Hwa Chong Junior College student (or soon to be one), look out for us during the Open House and CCA Exhibition! You may ask us further questions about the Club there! Alternatively, if you have made up your mind about joining the club, simply put us in your top 3 choices for CCA registration (which will be held online in ISP).
If you are not currently studying in Hwa Chong Junior College, and would like to join us for club sessions, do contact us! We will make arrangements for you then, assuming that you are a Secondary or Junior College student.
Are there any prerequisites?
No. Astronomy is fun and nothing should stop you from learning more about it!
Is this a competitive CCA?
While we do participate in competitions, they are not compulsory. This means that you can take the opportunity to join us in relaxing under the stars! People regularly come down for club sessions to relax and learn new things about astronomy! This also means that you can join us as your second CCA, with no commitment issues.
Where are club sessions usually held?
Club sessions are usually held in Hwa Chong Institution Main Campus in Bukit Timah.
How often are club sessions held?
Club Sessions are usually held on Wednesday 1600 – 1730 on even weeks and 1530 – 1700 on odd weeks. We also hold stargazing sessions every Thursday(TBC)
How many people are in the Astronomy Club?
On average, we have 50-100 people per batch applying to join our club when the new J1 batch comes in at the start of the year, but end up with 20-50 people after the CCA allocation is finalised. During the CCA registration period, you may sign up for as many CCAs as you like, with up to 5 choices. If you have more than 2 CCAs after the allocation comes out, you can choose a maximum of 2 official CCAs to be a part of. If you are interested in Astronomy, simply put our club as one of your top 3 CCA choices!
What do you do during Club sessions?
Normally, we will invite one of our members to share what they know (or have recently learnt) about Astronomy. Occasionally, we hold fun activities such as Comet Making or Constellation Games. At night, if the weather permits, we will hold Stargazing sessions to admire the beauty of the world we live in.
How much equipment do you have?
A lot. No, just kidding. We have some telescopes with some eyepieces, enough to gaze at a plethora of stellar objects, such as the planets or even the Sombrero Galaxy! We also have a Canon 550D on loan from the school for Astrophotography.
What can I gain from joining the club?
Astronomy Club is all about the fun of learning about Astronomy, a subject that few are exposed to. The club exposes provides various learning opportunities, brings you lifelong friends with the common interest in astronomy, and academic support in astronomy-related competitions and events. Some of the events members can participate in are the Singapore Astronomy Olympiad (a selection test for the prestigious International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics), AstroChallenge and the organising of the annual Astrigue Convention with Raffles Astronomy Club.
Is there a real chance to stargaze in light-polluted Singapore?
Singapore’s night sky does limit the number of celestial objects we can see here, but brighter stars and some Deep Sky Objects such as Omega Centauri can be seen from Singapore on a good day. We recognise this limitation and provide opportunities for overseas stargazing trips. Club members can attend the NYP-IPS Astronomy Retreat held in June annually, where can stargaze freely under clear night skies. Do keep a look out for this event!
PS: There are still good locations for stargazing in Singapore! Various nature reserves in Singapore, along with some offshore islands such as Pulau Ubin, offer adequately low levels of light pollution for you to gaze at the universe！Oh and yes, a dark rooftop at HCI works too!