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ACC Promotes High-Tech ‘Robot Rodeo’ at Burlington’s Fourth Friday June 23

Robots. A 3D ‘fidgets’ printer. A dazzling arc of blinding light via welding equipment. Not what you might expect to see in downtown Burlington. Not only can you see these displays on June 23, but eligible individuals aged 17-29 have the option of financial aid to learn careers using all this equipment and more.

Alamance Community College’s new TechHIRE program will showcase several fascinating industrial demonstrations during a 5-7 p.m. open house during downtown Burlington’s Fourth Friday street fair on Friday, June 23. STEAM Junction—a Maker’s Space and Incubator at 11 E. Front Street, just a half block from the main Fourth Friday events—is hosting ACC’s exhibits.

This TechHIRE-sponsored robotic immersion exhibition will feature a robotic arm used by students in the new Mechatronics Engineering associate degree program, a 3D “fidget” printer from Computer-Integrated Machining, a workable assembly line, and a portable blacksmithing shop from the Welding Technology program.

Alamance Community College’s TechHIRE program prepares students aged 17-to-29 to work in 21st century manufacturing.  TechHIRE students get upfront individualized assessment, placement in mechatronics or a related career pathway to earn a degree or certificate, intensive coaching, support services, partially paid tuition and expenses based on financial need, work-based experiences, support services, and job placement assistance.

In addition to the demonstrations and exhibits, visitors can learn about TechHIRE, Mechatronics Engineering, and other industrial programs featured at Alamance Community College.

Mechatronics, which combines several disciplines like mechanical engineering, electronics engineering, and computer skills, concentrates on the “systems of machines” that requires greater skills in areas such as math and physics. Students and workers in mechatronics field interact often with control devices, such as robotics and mechanical devices.

ACC kicked off its Mechatronics Engineering associate degree program last year following wide discussions with local manufacturers who are desperate for skilled workers in this 21st century industry. An offshoot of the program is the Career Accelerator Program (CAP) which offers learn-and-earn apprenticeships at several partnering local industries for high school students.

Other ACC features that evening include opportunities to talk with two of the CAP apprentice graduates, a GKN, Inc. representative, career counselors, and college enrollment representatives.

“Alamance Community College is proud to showcase some of the programs in our industrial technology division – including our new Mechatronics program. We are excited for the opportunities the new TechHIRE Program will give students,” said Karen Hughes, NC TechHire Program Coordinator at the college. “This is an exciting time for our community and the manufacturing industry in Alamance County.”