As biomechatronic technology has matured over the past 50 years, exoskeletons have emerged as leading tools for augmenting able-bodied performance, assisting human mobility and restoring lost limb function. These systems are anthropomorphic, structural devices that work in conjunction with the body’s natural architecture to aid limb mobility. Exploiting biomimetic design, such devices may be worn in close proximity to the body and transmit torques via powered revolute joints and structural limbs.
Ileane Smith's insight:
Titan Arm was designed and manufactured by teammates Elizabeth Beattie, Nicholas McGill, Nick Parrotta and Nikolay Vladimirov as seniors at the University of Pennsylvania. Beattie majored in mechanical engineering, and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. McGill double-majored in electrical and mechanical engineering, and is pursuing his MSE in robotics. Parrotta majored — and is now pursuing an MSE — in mechanical engineering. Vladimirov, a mechanical engineering major, now works at IDEO, a global design consultancy.
The important role science, technology, engineering and mathematics education has in catalyzing state economies and workforce readiness is generally recognized and certainly well documented. However, a critical piece of this message has gone missing: K-12 STEM education itself is overdue for a rethink.
Skills now necessary in manufacturing and the professions, new technical roles, high-tech product demands and new manufacturing technologies call for new STEM-based learning outcomes, increased STEM subject integration and diverse uses of technology that are largely absent in most STEM school subjects.
A related concern is the well-documented gap between how school STEM is learned and how STEM workers carry out their work in the everyday realities of their jobs.
Students may be graduating with the requisite clumps of subject knowledge mastered and formulas committed to memory, yet have little insight into how science, technology, engineering and mathematics come together to advance our quality of life, economic livelihood, responses to climate disruptions.
What exactly can be done to close this gap, to align school STEM and STEM in the workforce?
REME vehicle mechanic Corporal Lisah Brooking has been presented award for her outstanding contribution to the Bloodhound supersonnic car project...“I have learned so much about engineering here at Bloodhound SSC and been mentored by the best in the business – it’s a real honour to be recognised for what the skills I have got from the REME,” said Lisah. “I have no doubt that the knowledge I’ve gained from working on the Bloodhound project will help me on Operations and I’ll make sure that others get the benefit too and share it with those more junior to me."
Xavier University has received $500,000 from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to lead a six-school effort to devise a plan to get more members of minority groups interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics...
Can STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education be a cornerstone of a thriving economy? Is the ability to produce a gifted workforce rooted in a strong foundation of critical thinking skills, problem solving and collaborative teams a key to future success not only in Region 2000, but in the nation as a whole? The more and more I think about it, the answer is … yes!
By 2018, STEM jobs are expected to grow 17 percent, whereas other job growth areas are projected to trail at half that amount. One million job openings in STEM fields will occur, yet only 16 percent of college graduates have studied in STEM-related fields, despite the fact that 80 percent of jobs will require a technical skill in the next decade. These jobs average a 26 percent higher salary than in non-STEM-related fields.
These numbers illustrate the brewing of a “perfect storm” in technology-based industries. An insufficient rate of STEM graduates, combined with an aging workforce quickly approaching retirement, has the alarm bells sounding. That alarm is ringing right here in Region 2000. I hear these concerns every day from companies large and small, and there is a common theme to all of them. Companies cannot find local, qualified, candidates and struggle to find diversity in candidates within STEM fields.
When I hear these comments, I see a tragedy. The Lynchburg unemployment rate current sits at 5.6 percent, although it is lower than the national average of 7.1 percent (source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Local Area Unemployment Stats). Unemployment affects every aspect of our economy, from business success and growth; to citizen spending power and taxation, which impacts government services and public education.
So where is the root of this workforce dilemma? How do we prepare for a future filled with solutions, promise and hope?
Bemis Company is making an impact in the communities where its employees live and work. Through a $2.1 million commitment over a three-year period, Bemis is supporting over 100 high school Project Lead The Way programs. The partnership between Bemis and PLTW continues the expansion of the STEM pipeline and training of our nation's future workforce.
Ileane Smith's insight:
PLTW - Project Lead the Way is a great initiative for getting kids (and adults) involved in STEM.
Carlos A. Rodriguez was named President and Chief Executive Officer of ADP® in November 2011. Mr. Rodriguez has been with ADP since 1999, most recently as President and Chief Operating Officer since May 2011, and previously as President of National Account Services and Employer Services International. He joined ADP through its acquisition of Vincam, where he served initially as CFO for a short period before becoming President of ADP TotalSource®.
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How is it that among all the doom and gloom of the student debt crisis and skyrocketing tuitions, college has never been a better investment?
Ileane Smith's insight:
I've followed statistics for engineeing salaries for over 5 years. Petroleum engineers consistently come out on top. No surprise there, but I also find it interesting that not every University has a degree program in this field.
"The statistics surrounding STEM education and jobs in the US are rather staggering to me. The latest that I’ve read indicate that US students are still trailing WAY behind other nations in Science and Math education (US ranks 47th in Math and Science education quality, and 78% of high school graduates don’t meet the standard levels for at least one entry level STEM class). To top it off, there’s a pretty strong gender divide in the STEM subjects: Many fewer girls are interested in even studying these subjects, and they don’t feel at all confident about their skills."
ASTM International has announced the recipients of the Society’s 2013 Graduate Scholarship: Bernardo Castellanos, a Ph.D. candidate in civil engineering at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va., and Michael Hirsch, a Ph.D. candidate in mechanical engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga.
Ileane Smith's insight:
I'm so pleased with this announcement and ASTM's involvement in the advancement of STEM