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CMS enjoys robotics training unit

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

Clanton Middle School eighth graders learned about robotics and related fields during a visit from the Alabama Robotics Technology Park mobile lab.

Mike Evans led the tour of the mobile training unit.

“We just want them to really understand about Alabama’s industries, manufacturing facilities and the different technologies that they are using,” Evans said. “We are hoping to spark an interest in some of those areas.”

Evans told students there is a wide variety of careers related to robotics in some way, not just being an engineer.

Simulators allowed students to experience what it was like to drive a forklift and to weld pieces of equipment together.

Two types of robots used primarily in manufacturing facilities were on display.

Medical technology, 3D printers and drones were also discussed.

Teacher Allyson Wilborn said she had met Evans at a Skills USA event where students had only a few minutes in the training unit.

“When I realized that they would come to school, I went ahead and scheduled a time for them to come because it is important for these students to see this technology,” Wilborn said.

Evans also touched on training programs that were needed for robotics-related careers.

Student Thomas Davenport said he enjoyed “seeing all the cool tech and gadgets” during the tour.

He said the information about the different types of robots was new to him. One type on display was programmed to stop when it sensed something was in its way. The other types was not.

Student Austin Giles said he enjoyed getting to learn about robots and seeing how they work.

Alabama Robotics Technology Park is located in Decatur.

“AIDT part of their mission is to bring workforce to Alabama,” Evans said. “They have done education for adults for many, many years.”