Wednesday, 10 November 2021

Robotics Unlock a World of Opportunity

KEY TO SMARTNESS: Robotics are one vehicle to cultivate interest in STEM subjects KEY TO SMARTNESS: Robotics are one vehicle to cultivate interest in STEM subjects

CPUT is further entrenching its position of being a ‘globally excellent, locally relevant’ university by supporting robotic initiatives and strengthening science, technology and innovation in South Africa.

The university’s Adaptronics Advanced Manufacturing Technology Laboratory (AMTL) established a robotics programme towards the end of 2018, and since then CPUT students have placed in the top three of the Advanced Robotics Championship, held both regionally and nationally.

This month, the Service-Learning and Civic Engagement Units held a robotics stakeholder engagement workshop which included the Vice-Chancellor Prof Chris Nhlapo, DVC Research, Technology and Innovation Prof David Phaho, Calvin Maseko, CPUT Alumnus Tshitso Mosolodi from Snake Nation, along with CPUT students and lecturers.

Prof Nhlapo told the gathering that technology-centeredness is in the DNA of CPUT.
“We need to let the technology be the vehicle to improve our efficiencies and that is why my office is supporting this project. Smart teaching at CPUT needs to be unique to us,” he says.

The development of robotics at CPUT is already supported in a multi-disciplinary way at CPUT through a number of community engagement projects which aim to strengthen science and technology throughput from schools to university and ultimately in the world of work.

Manager in CPUT’s Centre for Community Engagement and Work Integrated Learning Jacqui Scheepers says that although the traditional home of robotics is in Engineering, it can permeate across all disciplines through community engagement, which her units are driving.

“STEM is the language of the future and we must move with the requirements of industry and society. It is our responsibility as a higher education institution to make sure that no one is left behind,” she says.

“STEM students have an advantage to access more dynamic professions and more diverse career opportunities.”

The workshop ended with a brainstorming session led by Dr Faiq Waghid where stakeholders discussed ways of strengthening the Robotics Community Engagement Committee at CPUT and inculcating robotics across the university.

Written by Lauren Kansley

Tel: +27 21 953 8646
Email: kansleyl@cput.ac.za

Liaises with the media and writes press releases about interesting developments at CPUT.