W.D. & Mary Baker Smith Career Center leads the state in robotics education

Moving Acadiana Forward

LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)- With industry standard machines and a competition field the high tech center leads the state in technology education. Ryland teaches the robotics classes and coaches their competition team.

“We are the only school in the state that has the set up that we have,” says Philip Ryland a teacher at the high tech center.

Students start with a concept, like how they need their robot to move. Then they head to the computer lab.

“We actually draw up our design of how we are going to build the robot, with what mechanisms are we going to use,” explains Ryland.

Using professional grade equipment like 3-D printers and CNC machines the students mill out and create parts that they will need to build a robot. They then assemble the robots and program them back in the computer lab.

Their competition team went to the World Championship in Houston last year, with more than 400 robots from around the globe the team made the semi final round.

“All of the skills that the students are learning, whether they are going to be going to college or never going to step foot on a campus, they can get a skill set that they can go out and become a very productive member of society. It’s social skills, it’s Learning engineer ring, it’s a whole compilation all wrapped into robotics,” says Ryland.

The school offers three different industry credentials and certifications that students can earn while still in high school.

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