As demand for robotics skills increases, students, workers, and employees need guidance on the best educational programs in the U.S. The Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing, or ARM, Institute announced that it has chosen three more programs to receive ARM Endorsement.
The new programs include associate's degrees at two community colleges and a FANUC training course.
“The entire ARM Team congratulates our newly endorsed programs,” stated Lisa Masciantonio, chief workforce officer at the ARM Institute. “The diversity of our endorsed programs reflects the ample education and training opportunities that exist for manufacturing careers working with robotics. When education seekers and employers seeking programs to upskill their workforce see the ARM Endorsement badge, they can be assured that the program meets the highest education standards set by the robotics industry.”
The ARM Institute is a public-private partnership intended to strengthen the U.S. industrial base and help U.S. manufacturing be more resilient. Industry, government, and academia collaborate through the Pittsburgh-based institute, which focuses on robotics and workforce innovation.
The U.S. Department of Defense-sponsored consortium's more than 340 members include start-ups, research universities, community colleges, manufacturers of all sizes, government agencies, workforce development organizations, and more.
ARM Institute seeks educational leaders
Launched in 2021, the ARM Endorsement Program audits and promotes the organizations that are most effective at preparing students for careers in manufacturing and working with robots. The ARM Institute's criteria for evaluating programs aligns with its robotics career pathways and competencies. It uses them to evaluate both organizations and their programs based on the following benchmarks:
- Relevance to the industry
- Effective curriculum
- Efficiency of the training
- Impact of the program
- Program sustainability
To reflect the importance of a diverse educational ecosystem, programs of all formats can apply for ARM endorsement, from high schools and robot supplier programs to community colleges and traditional universities.
Newly endorsed programs exceed expectations
“Each of our newly endorsed programs exceeded our evaluation criteria,” said the ARM Institute. The endorsement is part of the national workforce capability that connects education seekers with training for manufacturing careers.
The FANUC Handling Tool Operations & Programming course offered by the National Center for Urban Solutions (NCUS) Tec in Columbus, Ohio —Upon completion of this course, NCUS Tec students receive an industry-recognized FANUC certification in handling tool operations and programming.
The Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree program in robotics offered by the Westmoreland County Community College (WCCC) in Youngwood, Pa.— In addition to earning an AAS degree from WCCC, students can take advantage of internship opportunities designed to pair them with local employers for on-the-job experience and networking.
The Associate of Applied Science degree program in mechatronics offered by Motlow State Community College in Tullahoma, Tenn.—The AAS program in mechatronics at Motlow State includes an optional concentration in robotics. Students who follow this path substitute five robotics classes for the standard sophomore-level mechatronics classes.
ARM Institute has endorsed 15 programs to date
Since introducing the Endorsement Program in 2021 along with RoboticsCareer.org, the ARM Institute has endorsed twelve programs in addition to those described above. These programs are provided by the following organizations:
- Carnegie Mellon Robotics Academy
- Clover Park Technical College
- Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC)
- Horizon Science Academy Columbus High School (HSA)
- The Fortress Academy
- The National Coalition of Certification Centers (NC3)
- The University of Maryland—Maryland Robotics Center
- The University of Washington
- Universal Robots
- Wichita State University Campus of Applied Sciences and Technology (WSU Tech)
- Wichita State University, Department of Engineering Technology
Endorsed programs are highlighted on RoboticsCareer.org, which has more than 14,000 programs from across the U.S., as well as U.S territories. It includes programs ranging from high-school STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and micro-credentials through Ph.D. degrees delivered onsite, online, or in hybrid formats.