If you subscribe to any of our media channels then I’m sure you know about our involvement with after-school robotics programs in our community. These programs prepare students for careers in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) fields by getting them excited and engaged when it comes to not only learning new skills, but actually putting those skills to work.

Learning Life Skills with Robotics

Students are responsible for all aspects of robotic design and get to apply what they have learned in a team environment. Putting their newly gained technical skills to the test, while at the same time gaining presentation, financial management and business experience, helps them get a jump start in their careers. The students in these programs compete on a regular basis and have had numerous successes in robotics competitions all over the world. And many have developed a passion for engineering or even, like John Welsch, discovered their calling in life.

Robotics Is So Much More Than Robots

In a recent article for the Atlanta Journal Constitution, John Welsch describes his path from president of his high school’s robotics club to the technical teaching position he currently holds. Welsch has come full circle, from student to teacher, with his passion for robotics and STEM. As he states in the article, “I knew I wanted to come back and work with the next generation of students.”

AutomationDirect has been directly involved with local school robotics for over a decade, donating both time and resources in an effort to give back to the community we serve. With AutomationDirect’s funding and teachers like John Welsch, robotics programs have flourished in 5 high schools, 10 middle schools and about 15 elementary schools in Forsyth County, Georgia. As Welsch notes in the article, “In my program alone, I had 50 7th and 8th graders last year. I also have 240 students in classes where we do robotics, too. Having it in class has also changed my numbers; last year, it was 60-40 boys to girls, and this year, I’m looking at the opposite. Robotics have really become a big part of what the students do here, and I love seeing what it does for them.”

Robotics Is So Much More Than Robots

To read more about John Welsch’s story and how robotics in school is impacting future generations, check out AJC’s full article here.

To read more about AutomationDirect’s support of robotics and how it all started, go to this article.

Or click this link to hear Rick Folea’s interview on a local radio station regarding the success of these programs. Rick is one of the many AutomationDirect employees involved with robotics and has been a pivotal part of their success.

Originally posted: Aug 17, 2017