CAEST forms robotics club


Leah Klafczynski

Senior industrial technology major Dan Kish (left) demonstrates motion control to Professor Shin-Min Song and members of the new robotics club at Kent State University in Van Deusen Hall Friday, April 11, 2014.

Elizabeth Randolph

A professor in the College of Applied Engineering, Sustainability and Technology, or CAEST, started a new student organization called the robotics club for students who are interested in robots.

Simon Song, a professor in the college of Applied Engineering, Sustainability and Technology, has been teaching courses geared toward robotics for more than 20 years and began the robotics club this semester.

Song said the group is going to work together to build a robot and compete in the ATMAE, or Association of Technology Management and Applied Engineering, competition in November.

Song said the group would better develop both CAEST’s mechanical engineering and mechatronics program.

“Both mechatronics and mechanical engineering has robotic elements to it,” Song said. “We think this club will enhance these two programs and accumulate the knowledge in robotics, which can support the teaching and research part of the college.”

Darwin Boyd, assistant professor in the College of Applied Engineering and Technology, said this year was the perfect time to start a robotics club.

“Everything kind of came together,” Boyd said. “We have Dr. Song, the mechatronics program and the fact that we really needed a [club] for our programs.”

Song said there were many students who were interested in joining the club after an announcement he made early in the semester.

“In the first week, we had eight people email me to be a part of the club,“ Song said. “In the second week, we grew to about 15 students. Now, we have 19 students in the club.”

Senior industrial technology major Daniel Kish leads the robotics club and said he wasn’t expecting so many people to be interested in the group.

“The interest in this group has really snowballed,” Kish said. “It’s surprising, really; I didn’t expect everything to happen so fast.”

Kish said the Association of Technology, Management, and Applied Engineering, or ATMAE, competition is only one way to put everything the group stands for together.

“We want to do more than the ATMAE with the club,” Kish said. “The ATMAE will kind of mold everyone into place because it helps us figure out an actual system and teach the group how to compete in these competitions.”

Kish said the group can appeal to people in many different majors once it becomes an official student organization in the fall.

“Robots aren’t a hard sell,” Kish said. “They’re such a physical and visual component of so many different things and a big part of the way the world is now.”

Video by Brian Smith.

Contact Elizabeth Randolph at [email protected].