Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon Robotics Academy

Use educational affordances of robotics to create CS-STEM opportunities for all learners

WAF Kickoff image

February 16, 2021

Three Pittsburgh area high schools kick off their 2021 cohort of students for SMART

By Vu Nguyen

February 15th, 2021 - PITTSBURGH, PA - Three high schools in the Pittsburgh area are set to officially kick off their 2021 cohort of students for the SMART pre-apprenticeship program. Clairton City High School, Perry High School, and North Hills High School will all began two of the five SMART Robotics Technician micro-certification courses.

For Clairton City High School, this is their second semester running the program. Last year, Will Allen Foundation ran the program at Clairton with 22 students on the Electrical Foundations course. This year, all three schools started with the Robotics Integration/Software Foundations combination course.

Robotics Integration simulates situations where a company may purchase a large robotics kit, but before the kit is assembled the technician must ensure that all of the parts arrived, and the components are tested. The technician then must assemble the kit, and later will integrate a third-party system (e.g. a vision system/camera). This comes with its own host of possible issues that must be overcome! Software Foundations, on the other hand, focuses on using software to program the robot that is put together. There is more focus on some programming to get the robot moving, and to use the newly assembled camera system.

Graduates of the program will receive a pair of CMRA micro-certifications in Robotics Integration and Software Foundations, and will also participate in virtual site visits from participating companies to explore what they do, the types of skills they look for in hires, and a chance to see demonstrations of their products (if available).

Learn more about the outreach portion of our SMART program by visiting our SMART-ER page. You can also learn more about our friends at the Will Allen Foundation to learn about the wonderful programs they run.