Mrs. Hamann's Barker STEM 8th grade classes visited Purdue University Northwest Engineering & Technology Department on the Westville campus Tuesday, November 8th. The goal of the field trip was to introduce students to education and career opportunities in engineering and technology.
8th grade students visited a robotics and AI lab (artificial intelligence) with Dr. Stefanek and Travis (a high ranking student in the department). Students were introduced to their programs and degrees involving: Programming, Cybersecurity, Database Design, and Networking. Projects such as robots that harvest vegetables in a greenhouse where the robot is operated remotely from anywhere around the world to navigate the robot and it's arm were discussed. Cybersecurity positions are in such high demand that for example there are over 20,000 jobs alone open in the Chicago area in cybersecurity!
Students also toured the Construction Engineering & Management Technology labs. Dr. Zhang discussed with students how having talent in leadership and being able to lead a team is important. For the next 10 years or more, these career paths will be in high demand. Roads, bridges, buildings, dams, railroads, highways, airports, etc will be included into the Infrastructure Bill to invest in the future. Students got to see hands on different testing methodologies of different construction materials such as concrete and wood.