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ARM and the Ohio Department of Education endorse Universal Robots for education

Nov. 15, 2021

When schools educate students in a new technology, they look to validate that the hardware and software they use in the curriculum is relevant to companies employing graduates. Educational institutions also need to ensure that funding for acquiring the classroom technology is obtainable.

Two recent endorsements of Universal Robots’ products and educational curriculum awarded by ARM and the Ohio Department of Education offer schools that insight, emphasizing the importance of Universal Robots’ cobots in today’s manufacturing processes and in classrooms. Universal Robots is the first robotics manufacturer to be selected for ARM’s new Endorsement Program as ARM reviewed the company’s Educational Robotics Training program. At the state level, Ohio becomes the first U.S. state to evaluate and add Universal Robots courses to its Industry-Recognized Credential List.

“These endorsements mean the world to schools hoping to introduce hands-on cobot courses in their classrooms,” said Corey Adams, channel development manager at Universal Robots. “The educational legitimacy of Universal Robots’ cobots opens the door to applying for both expanded federal funding and in Ohio also state funding to acquire cobots. And it gives schools confidence that they are not only offering students a diploma but also an instant career path.”

Support from major industries

In order to make the Ohio Department of Education’s credentialed list, numerous companies in the state, including major Tier 1 automotive makers and home appliance manufacturers, vouched for the Universal Robots’ cobots, detailing how they use them on the shop floor and need an ever-expanding, educated workforce to deploy, program and operate them. “Ohio is industry leading in recognizing manufacturing technology and we expect this to quickly cascade out to other states as well,” said Adams, who is actively working with numerous states in obtaining educational credentials.

The Department of Defense-sponsored ARM Institute is a 300+ member organization that catalyzes robotic technologies and education solutions to strengthen the U.S. industrial base and secure U.S. manufacturing resiliency. ARM launched the endorsement program earlier this year in conjunction with RoboticsCareer.org, the ARM Institute’s national workforce capability that connects education seekers with training for manufacturing careers.

Brian Wilson chairs the Education and Workforce Advisory Committee at ARM and audited the Universal Robots Robotics Training Program: “It’s a very rigorous audit that made it apparent that Universal Robots listened and adapted to industry needs,” he said. “There is a big push for cobots that are affordable, that can easily be redeployed in different applications, and that are for both the large enterprise but also for the entrepreneur. Our endorsement is not just an academic accreditation; we look at whether the program helps the industry educate the workforce they need right now.”

Ripple effect through supply chains

At the Columbus State Community College in Ohio, the director of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), Jeff Spain, explains how the college is now building a mixed lab space for cobots, that will focus on both professional development for manufacturing employees while also educating the next workforce generation to hit the ground running with cobots. “With their reduced footprint and intuitive programming, cobots have been a major disruption to industrial automation and are within that Industry 4.0 sweet spot of technology solutions that we find that our local employers need funded education programs for,” he said. “When large companies endorse Universal Robots cobots, it has a ripple effect through the supply-chains as Tier 1-3 suppliers and other industries realize that here is a vetted, nimble technology, that we have found offers low risk.”

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