Universal Robots in Ann Arbor Launches National Cobot Curriculum

As collaborative robots emerge as the fastest growing segment of industrial automation, cobot curriculum developed by an accredited provider is increasingly sought after in both schools and manufacturing industries.
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Universal Robots curriculum
Universal Robots has been accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training to offer continuing education on cobots. // Image courtesy of Universal Robots

As collaborative robots emerge as the fastest growing segment of industrial automation, cobot curriculum developed by an accredited provider is increasingly sought after in both schools and manufacturing industries.

To that end, Universal Robots Inc. in Ann Arbor today announced it has been accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET) and now is authorized to issue the IACET CEU (continuing education units).

The education program provides a clearly defined pathway for students to master cobot (collaborative robot) programming and deployment as part of an Industry 4.0 career in robotics and advanced manufacturing.

Schools now can purchase the ready-to-go package that includes the complete curriculum, a UR cobot arm, and the hardware and software required to build actual industrial applications.

“With the education program, we’re addressing a tremendous need to provide cobot training as part of an integrated, accredited course,” says Joe Campbell, senior manager of applications development at Universal Robots. “This hands-on learning initiative will be instrumental in addressing the skills gap and get state-of-the art cobots into classrooms, offering students instant employability and manufacturers access to an upskilled workforce.”

The 32-hour course has been developed with assistance from Ritch Ramey, coordinator of RAMTEC, (The Robotics and Advanced Manufacturing Technology Education Collaborative) overseeing robotics training at the 24 Tri-Rivers career centers in Ohio, representing the largest, most comprehensive robotics education center in the nation.

“Being able to offer a complete, turnkey training program with an industry-recognized credential gives schools increased access to both private grants and government funding when bringing cobots into classrooms,” he says. “It will make all the difference in the acceleration of student access to a real industrial robot that is both safe to operate in a classroom and easy to use.”

Upon completion of the course work, a student receives 32 course credit hours and a Universal Robots industry-recognized certification. The course can be taught in high schools, dual-enrollment courses, and in colleges.

The program also will be offered to manufacturers seeking certified cobot training for employees; industry professionals can attend classes either through local schools and career centers or in classes offered by Universal Robots’ authorized partners.

Sending employees for certified robotics training developed by an accredited provider is often encouraged by local and state governments that increasingly reimburse companies for the training costs.

“This is really a win-win,” says Campbell. “Manufacturers struggling to attract and retain skilled workers within automation can now easily train and encourage existing staff – while employees now get a unique opportunity to receive a recognized certification that they can add to their resume for future career advancements.”

Attendees at Universal Robots’ virtual Cobot Expo 2.0 Nov. 16-17 will be the first to see the new education program showcased. Building on the first Cobot Expo in July, the 2.0 version features floorplans organized by the most popular application segments, featuring 19 exhibiting partners, live “on demand” demos, and keynote presentations.

The education program is featured in a dedicated booth and will be presented in the keynote “Accelerating Tomorrow’s Engineers.”

In addition to the formalized core curriculum, the Universal Robots Education Program Package consists of:

  • UR Cobot Unit (UR3e or UR5e)
  • 24 course licenses
  • Gripper Demo Kit
  • UR Academy Hardware Set
  • One conveyor assembly including conveyor, encoder, two sensors and I/O simulation test box
  • 10 3-D printed training elements for exercises
  • One 3-D printed dual TCP
  • Six 3-D printed workpieces

For institutions that already have cobots, a retro package is available with course curricula, classroom support hardware, and software.

Universal Robots was founded in 2005 to develop small, user-friendly, reasonably priced, flexible collaborative robots (cobots) that are safe to work side by side with people.

The company, part of Teradyne Inc., is headquartered in Odense, Denmark, and has regional offices in the United States, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, UK, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Russia, Turkey, China, India, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Mexico. In 2019, Universal Robots had a revenue of $248 million.

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