After-school AMSE programs offer students a platform to engage with exciting material and the chance to participate in life-changing experiences in the STEM fields. Students who have registered for ASME Membership or AMSE Honors status are eligible apply for an AMSE Program. Find the membership and honors requirements here.

The AMSE Program application for the 2020-21 school year is available from May 8, 2020 through July 15, 2020.

AMSE HS Programs Application Opens
May 8 - July 15, 2020



Days Per Week

Day(s) of Week

Selection Process


Astronomy Research
Level 1 & 2


Lottery (L1)
Continuing (L2)

Digi-X/EsportsYear-longVirtual Mtgs. + 1x per semester FEnroll
Health & WellnessSemester1Lottery
International Space Station Program (ISS)Semester1Th Lottery
International Space Station Research LabYear-long2T/Th Evaluation
Math TeamYear-long1 Lunch & After School Th Enroll
Ocean DiscoveryYear-long2M/WEvaluation
Robotics TeamSemester2M/WEvaluation


A new program for 2020/21, students will explore the science behind flight through an introductory investigation of the basic elements of aeronautics, fluid dynamics, aerodynamics, launch systems, and flight mechanics. Using hands-on training opportunities, students will discover the specifics of aerodynamics and current technologies in the growing field of aeronautical engineering.


Pursuing innovation in the field of agriculture with sustainability as its focus, students will work in our new garden space to explore a myriad of agri-science technologies including hydroponics, aeroponics, and vertical farming. In addition to outdoor activities, students will participate in classroom lessons where they will explore the relationship between humans, organisms, and the environment as well as understand what it takes to manage soil, water, crops, diseases, pests, energy, and waste.  The overarching goal of Agri-Tech is to evaluate the productivity and ease of use of different garden systems and to recommend a system that the WALK Program can implement in developing countries to combat food insecurity.

Astronomy Research

There are two distinct options available for Astronomy Research Program involvement. Both options provide students with practical, hands-on opportunities in the field of astronomy while exploring careers and interfacing with industry professionals. Utilizing the VCS observatory, students integrate math, physics, chemistry, and astrophysics into projects. Level 1 is introductory for new students to the program. Level 2 includes an in-depth research project which fulfills the AMSE Research Project requirement for AMSE Honors students. The prerequisite for the Level 2 program includes previous participation in the Astronomy Research program.


Designed for students interested in participating in organized, multiplayer video game competitions between individuals and/or teams in the High School Esports League (HSEL), this program focuses on the positive development of Esports by providing a structured, competitive, high-level high school program that allows VCHS students to connect with each other and with other high school students locally and around the country. Program participants are expected to have some knowledge of the game they would like to play beyond the knowledge of a casual player. Diagnostic tests may be conducted to test a player's game awareness and skills. HSEL games include Madden 20, Rocket League, NBA 2K, Overwatch, Super Smash Bros Ultimate, Hearthstone, Fortnite, Minecraft Survival Games, and League of Legends.

Health & Wellness

Launched in January 2020, this new health science initiative introduces students to various aspects of physical and mental health, this program is designed to help students prepare for college programs in the medical field, including allied health (such as physical therapists, dental hygienists, audiologists, dietitians, etc.), students will apply principles of biology, chemistry, anatomy, and physiology to the study and interpretation of human health and disease. Guest speakers and hands-on service projects are some of the ways that students will experience learning opportunities as they explore health career topics suited to their needs, aptitudes, and career plans.

International Space Station Program (ISS)

There are two distinct options available for ISS Program involvement. Both options teach engineering, circuitry, programming, and data analysis.

Designed for students who are interested in space science with a limited time commitment, this fast-paced, semester-long course includes 2-3 pre-designed experiments, multiple data uploads to the ISS, and the opportunity for data analysis. Students will analyze experiments around heat, radiation, conduction, and convection and compare the results on earth and in micro-gravity.

Designed for students who have a passion for space science, this year-long, self-paced program includes research for a single custom experiment which will be launched to the ISS. Data analysis will be available the following school year. Prerequisite: Completion of the VCJH Space Elective, VCHS ISS Space Program, or previous VCHS ISS Program experience.

Students in the International Space Station (ISS) Space Lab conceive, design, build, test, integrate, and qualify customized science experiments that are sent into space and active on the ISS for 30 days. Each experiment module contains a digital camera and student-programmed microcontroller, and the experiment data is sent to Earth for student evaluation. Student teams have the opportunity to present their flight test results at space-sponsored conferences and work with partner school from around the world. Teachers and administrators interested in implementing the ISS Program in their school can learn more by visiting Quest for Space.

  • Recent VCHS student experiments on the International Space Station include:
    • The Effects of BAM-FX Nutrient Solution and Endophytes on Plant Growth in Microgravity
    • The Efficacy of Sharklet Material in Preventing the Growth of E. coli Bacteria in Microgravity
    • The Effects of Microgravity on the Electrochemical Characteristics of a Microbial Fuel Cell
    • Measuring the Rate of Lactococcus lactus Fermentation in Microgravity
    • Measuring Radiation with Respect to Solar Flares and the South Atlantic / Anomaly / Light Propulsion in Microgravity / Ferrofluid Heat Dissipation
    • Prevention of Biofilm Formation in Microgravity Using an Antimicrobial Copper Paint
    • Slime Mold (Physarum Polycephalum) Growth in Patterned Structure under Micro-gravity
    • The Effects of BAM-FX (Bio-Available Mineral Formula-X) Nutrient Solution and Endophytes on Marathon Broccoli Plant Growth in Microgravity
  • Awards and distinctions include commendations from the San Jose Mayor’s office and letters of congratulations from:
    • Astronauts Buzz Aldrin and John Glenn
    • Astronaut Dr. Yvonne Cagle
    • Actor Tom Hanks
    • President Barack Obama
    • Vice President Joe Biden
    • California State Senator Barbara Boxer

Math Team

The VCHS award-winning Math Team provides students with the opportunity to compete in local, national, and international competitions, attend seminars, and receive assessment testing. Qualifying students can participate in Mu Alpha Theta National Honor Society.

The Mu Alpha Theta Math Honors Society is a national high school and two-year college Mathematics Honor Society with over 110,000 student members in more than 2,400 U.S. schools and 20 foreign countries. Competitions include mathematics at all levels and are a blend of team and individual formats.

Ocean Discovery

Ocean Discovery students are part of the Valley Christian High School’s MATE (Marine Advanced Technology Education) Team, which promotes annual, regional and international competitions for building remotely operated vehicles for use underwater. Students gain hands-on engineering experience by building an underwater robot in six months and compete against elite high schools and colleges from around the world.

VCHS’s Ocean Discovery MATE ROV team operates as a student-led company, with engineering and business aspects, and positions such as CEO and CFO; students handle everything from interviewing prospective team members, to designing electronics, to tracking the budget. This gives participants a unique opportunity to develop leadership and teamwork skills.

The MATE ROV competition has been featured in a book and two movies, and its alumni have gone into a variety of jobs in the ocean engineering industry. The competition values workplace safety and student leadership as well as real world connections, with tasks that model ocean engineering challenges in industry. Some tasks that have appeared as parts of previous competitions include deploying a micro-ROV to search the inside of a Corex drain pipe, using artificial intelligence to categorize shapes viewed through an underwater video feed, and designing an independent non-ROV device with a mechanism that causes it to detach from an anchor when it receives an acoustic tone from the team’s ROV.

Through participating in the MATE ROV competition, students learn skills such as technical writing, machining, CAD, programming, soldering, electrical design, assembly, and more. Students also learn business skills such as tracking purchases, marketing, pitching a product, and organizing a project. Each year in May, Ocean Discovery students compete against other high schools and colleges in a regional competition and have the opportunity to advance to the international competition that takes place in June.

Find more information on MATE here.



Students may apply for the first semester only. Semester One Robotics focuses on developing skills in the areas of software, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, computer-aided design (CAD) and outreach. Activities focus on equipping students with the essential skillsets necessary for competing in the second semester FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) season.

Semester Two teams will be chosen through a formal selection process including semester one students and previous competition team members. During this semester, students participate in the fast-paced FRC competition season, giving them the opportunity to compete at the local, regional, and international levels. Participation during the second semester fulfills the AMSE Research Project requirement for AMSE Honors students.


The following STEM-focused clubs are available for students: 3D Design, Chemistry, Chess, Drone, Environmental, Forensics, Future of Science Association, Future Surgeons of America, HyTec, Makers, Marine Biology, Math Honors, MD Junior, Medical, Migraine Awareness, Nutrition, Physics, Puzzle, Quiz Bowl, SNAP (Special Needs Awareness Partnership), St. Jude Cancer, USA Biology Olympiad.

For detailed information, please visit our Student Clubs page.

  • Elementary School 1450 Leigh Avenue
  • San Jose, CA 95125 408.559.4400 FAX: 408.559.4022
  • Junior High 100 Skyway Drive, Ste. 130
  • San Jose, CA 95111 408.513.2460 FAX: 408.513.2472
  • High School 100 Skyway Drive, Ste. 110
  • San Jose, CA 95111 408.513.2400 FAX: 408.513.2527
powered by finalsite