Over the last several years, Rockwell Automation has worked with Discovery World to create a multi-pronged approach aimed at introducing students to the company and to the skillsets required to enter industry in the coming years.
In 2015, Discovery World opened the Music Factory, an exhibit that showcases Rockwell Automation technology through visualization and music, using dozens of sensors and more than a thousand moving golf balls.
Over the last three years, Rockwell Automation helped expand Discovery World’s automation education curriculum by providing a full-time Automation Educator to deliver programming in the Rockwell Automation Educational Lab, which offers courses in robotics, circuitry, automation and programming for elementary through high school students.
The exhibit serves to spark interest while entertaining guests of all ages, and the lab experiences provide an outlet for those whose curiosity is peaked and who want to delve more deeply into automation even before high school. Student classes during the academic year, as well as week-long summer camp programs enable that “deep dive” for kids to explore their interests.
Recently,Rockwell Automation helped cultivate a partnership between Discovery World and Waukesha County Technical College (WCTC).
The collaboration provides WCTC students with an opportunity to work alongside industry professionals to build and program a tic-tac-toe playing robot that is now a permanent exhibit feature within the Rockwell Automation Exhibit at Discovery World.
Discovery World receives the benefit of new, fresh content done by local students, and the students have the chance to see their work enjoyed by 300,000 visitors annually.
Through our partnership, we are creating transformational experiences that have the potential to inspire children to explore careers in engineering and automation.
Young people are welcomed into the front door of the workforce development pipeline on Milwaukee’s lakefront, and they make additional stops along the way in schools, technical colleges and universities before making their way to a career at Rockwell Automation or elsewhere in manufacturing or engineering.
Partnerships like this one offer multiple purposes and can potentially serve as a blueprint towards additional progress in bridging the skills gap locally and across the region.