The inspiration for forming My Future Path was to address a gap that we feel exists starting at the high school level and continuing on to higher levels of education for people uniquely-qualified to be strong contributors to companies using robots, automation, and other forms of mechatronics in the manufacturing space.
The automation industry has been advancing very rapidly in the last decade and costs have been decreasing dramatically. Given this, there are far more opportunities to implement automation in companies than ever before, but companies are struggling to find the sufficient people to support this.
Our education system has made progress in bringing these technologies to the high school and college level, but not at the pace that industry has been advancing.
There are very limited opportunities for students who may be very good at the combination of technical, creative, and hands-on skills that lead to success in the automation industry to identify and develop their strengths. Some of these students may feel like they “don’t fit well” in a learning environment because their grades may be only average. As a result, they struggle with finding a path for their future.
It is difficult for high schools to get people with a mechatronics background to teach courses. What if we could augment their courses with people from industry? Think of a great teacher you had that was skilled in a subject that inspired you. We want to offer that opportunity to students at all levels. Through funding experts to augment the courses, curriculum advice and equipment donations, we can make a big difference!
Most scholarship programs look at an overall grade point average, which is perfectly understandable. We certainly want to welcome and reward those students with our program, but we also want to reward those students who are especially good at mechatronics but may not be at the "top of the class" from an overall view. These students deserve a helping hand, through both scholarships and internships.
Companies need skilled mechatronics employees but struggle to find people who are ready to make an immediate impact upon hire. Educators look for and welcome input from industry. We want to be a conduit for this.
Please send us your thoughts!