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Robotics Funding Resources

  • Thread starter mishima
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  • #1
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Main Question or Discussion Point

My students would like to become engaged in the construction of robots. I am not sure what the best options are for kit purchase or DIY-type. I was also curious of any national organizations that might have funding opportunities. Thank you.
 
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Answers and Replies

  • #3
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Thanks, I feel like there are a lot of options and I just need to find the right fit.
 
  • #4
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As someone who has worked in the manufacturing industry, I believe you could do this and get more money than you would know what to do with:
  • Create a simple proposal of a couple paragraphs describing in total how much funding you need to do whatever it is you want to do (be specific). Include phrases touting 'future engineers' and 'future employees' for them to chew on.
  • Include in proposal a request for a modest amount of contribution from local manufacturing companies, suppliers, related engineering firms.
  • Develop a list of those companies and send out the solicitations. Target the leaders who have spending authority. Companies would be reluctant to donate 1000's, but usually wouldn't hesitate to donate 10's or 100's. Face to face or direct telephone conversations work best. Consider finding the local engineering professional societies (ASME, SME, IEEE, etc) and attending those meetings and soliciting directly...all of those societies want to do something "to help the students".
  • Invite or request an engineer to come to your class for a short talk on what it is they do etc.
  • You may also request if any of these companies have surplus equipment that they could donate. They ALL do, they could get the asset's value off their books and get some good Public Relations at the same time. And you get equipment. Win-win.

There's a lot of pent-up, un-tapped energy and funding in resources like this. I've watched folks participate in the FIRST Robotics competitions and usually it is the industry engineers who are doing (and enjoying) most of the work.
 

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