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New lab gives experience in science, technology, engineering, mathematics fields

GREENWOOD, Ind. (WISH) — Two brothers on Thursday thoughtfully explored each display on science, technology, engineering, mathematics fields inside Endress + Hauser, an instrumentation company.

From watching robots perform basics tasks through coding to controlling their own for entertainment, the boys were intrigued by the new innovation studio.

Their mother, a local educator, was amongst other teachers invited to an open house to see what the space has to offer for students. The studio provides hands-on experience with additive manufacturing, robotics, coding, engineering and science learning modules. The modules featured 3-D printers, robotic arms, spherical robots called Spheros, littleBits electronic building Kits for Kids.

Endress + Hauser was awarded a grant through Purdue University’s Indiana Next Generation Manufacturing Competitiveness Center, also known as IN-MaC, to create a design and innovation studio on their campus in Greenwood. The studio will serve as an open space for students and teachers in Johnson and Marion counties to use for instruction. The space offers science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) trades, manufacturing and process automation through fun, hands-on learning.

Purdue IN-MAC also offer educators a curriculum that is tied to Indiana government’s K-8 standards in science, math, English, and social studies.

In partnership with STEM Education Works, Purdue IN-MaC is investing in design and innovation studios across Indiana. The studios are designed to provide opportunities for schools, educators, students and the industry to discover ways to explore design thinking, problem solving, technology, and creative skill sets.

Endress + Hauser leaders cut the ribbon on the new space Thursday afternoon. 

Nicole Otte is the director of workforce development with Endress + Hauser. Otte said the project has been in the works for the last year.

“Students need to get an awareness about whatever career opportunity they’re interested in and we always want to see more students going into STEM, trades and manufacturing,” Otte said.

Jerry Spindler is the early workforce development program manager with Endress + Hauser. He will be running the space. 

During the open house, Sprindler and Otte taught educators about the curriculum they can use for students. “We’re actually trying to build up the skills of that future workforce. It starts very early, and we’re trying to reach out to that K-8 range now,” Spindler said.

Educators can reserve the space on Fridays each week.