The Importance of STEM Education

[fa icon='calendar'] Aug 15, 2016 10:00:45 AM / by Brittney Borowicz posted in education, engineering, General, mathematics, science, STEM, STEM education, students, technology

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By Nathan Rockershousen, Technical Writer

Innovation is at the forefront of the technical field, requiring a societal emphasis on the development of technological skills. It is now more important than ever that science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) are a main aspect of the educational infrastructure. Science and technology are improving the quality of human life by creating innovative technology that is becoming a more integrated part of our bodies and environments. Engineering and mathematics are helping to overcome the challenges faced around the globe. The need for STEM-based innovation will make it essential that students are being trained to fill the occupational demands in STEM fields.

Introducing students to a STEM-based curriculum will be beneficial for their future. In the current technological era, there will be a greater need for jobs in technical fields. This means that getting children interested in science and mathematics will help lead them down a path to success. Students will develop strong critical thinking and problem-solving skills, which will help create an opportunity for a valuable career when they are older. The United States Department of Education projects that there will be a substantial increase of jobs and salaries in STEM-related fields within the next ten years. The ability to evaluate complex information and solve difficult problems will make today’s students the future of tomorrow’s innovation.

The prosperity of students in terms of their educations and their futures is not the only reason that a STEM curriculum is necessary. As the push for globalization continues to grow, it is becoming increasingly important to embrace the benefits of science and technology that are at the foundation of the global market economy. Students will learn real world applications of science and technology through a STEM curriculum. This is crucial for future innovation as it can help lead to solutions to global challenges such as cancer, global warming, hunger, and much more. In order for globalization and innovation to be sustained, it will be critical that the educational system can spark its students’ interests in STEM subjects.

The current curriculum does not convey the necessity of scientific thinking in our lives. Educational systems need to prepare students for a future job market that will depend upon science and technology. There is a diverse set of careers that can come from a STEM-based education. The variety of STEM jobs should be leading the push for a new curriculum because it will teach students that science, technology, engineering, and math can be applied in so many different ways.

In order for global scientific and technological innovation to continue to expand at its current rate, educating children on STEM subjects should be required. Inspiring students to embrace the problem-solving skills that are learned through STEM topics will assist in creating a bright future. It is important that any technical subject material is taught in a very enthusiastic and interactive manner. Fully engaging students in STEM materials will help in developing the next generation of innovation. Enforcing a STEM-based educational curriculum can be beneficial across the globe in terms of creating future, cutting-edge, technological advancements.

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Employee Spotlight: Glenn Rodgers, VP of Production

[fa icon='calendar'] Jan 8, 2016 7:33:18 AM / by Brittney Borowicz posted in Arduino, Employee Spotlight, engineering, exploring, fishing, forest preserves, General, Glenn Rodgers, GPS readers, graphic panels, Grid Connect, GW, Internet of Things, IoT, LED strings, metal, microprocessor, Mike Justice, ping pong, product manager, production, Quick Panel HMI, retirement, sales, table tennis, Tech Support, technical writer, Total Control, wood

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About 12 years ago, Glenn Rodgers and Mike Justice sat in an empty building and Glenn made a little, paper sign that said "Grid Connect" and hung it on the door. Glenn and several other employees worked for the next four months without a salary until the Grid Connect business got going. It's clear that Glenn has been extremely dedicated to working for Grid Connect from day one.

Prior to joining the Grid Connect team, Glenn was the product manager for the Quick Panel HMI product line at Total Control. He started with them as the technical writer, then developed the technical support group and training department, and attended trade shows in support of the sales team. Glenn worked there for 14 years until GE bought the company. At Grid Connect, Glenn now concentrates his efforts in support of the production department and some support for engineering. When it comes to working at Grid Connect, Glenn likes the constant stream of new challenges and products... and of course the table tennis. "Grid Connect has grown to become a leader in new technologies. I see a new generation of smart devices and applications that will propel us to become a major player in the Internet of Things (IoT) arena."

Glenn spends a lot of his spare time fishing and exploring local forest preserves. He likes creating things from wood and metal and designing things on a smaller scale, like fishing lures. Glenn still works with his Arduino microprocessor and sets up different maker projects, like LED strings, GPS readers, and graphic panels. Glenn looks forward to retirement in the next few years and continuing to be part of Grid Connect's new growth the IoT space.

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Grid Connect is an All-Inclusive Development Partner

[fa icon='calendar'] Jul 20, 2015 8:52:42 AM / by Brittney Borowicz posted in 900 MHz, Android, app, applications, apps, BLE, Bluetooth, build, CE, certifications, Cloud, connectsense, design, embedded, encryption, engineer, engineering, Ethernet, FCC, General, Grid Connect, hardware, iOS, layout, networking, OS, prototype, RoHS, security, Serial, smart phone, software, SSL, UL, web page, Wi-Fi, ZigBee, wifi, Wireless

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A Complete Development Partner for Hardware, Software, Apps and Cloud Services

Grid Connect Inc. has one of the best engineering teams in the world. Our strong development team can quickly and effectively implement your partial or complete networking/cloud-based or embedded product. For more than 20 years we have been helping customers put networking technology into their products. In the past the focus has been Ethernet, serial and propriety networks. Now days, the focus is on wireless networks like Wi-Fi, ZigBee, Bluetooth/BLE and 900 MHz.

A few of Grid Connect’s many development capabilities include:

  • Designing, layout and quick turn prototype hardware
  • Designing, programming and debugging embedded software
  • Designing and building iOS and Android smart phone and tablet applications
  • Designing, building and rolling out complete cloud/web applications
  • Embedded Linux or Real-time OS driver development
  • SSL security and hardware and software encryption option
  • Production of custom hardware
  • Embedded Web page development
  • Pre-loading of custom/customer firmware on to standard modules
  • Complete diagnostic testing of hardware and software prior to shipment
  • Work with test labs to complete FCC, CE, UL, and RoHS certifications
  • Custom labeling

 

The ConnectSense Case Study

With the ConnectSense brand of products, we took Grid Connect’s embedded networking expertise and put it to use in the consumer home automation/Internet of Things marketplace. In creating ConnectSense, we built a full end-to-end solution, which incorporated custom hardware, embedded Linux development, a custom cloud solution, and custom enclosures and sensors.

Since releasing ConnectSense to the market in 2013, we have continued to move our technology forward. With the ConnectSense Smart Outlet we have made great strides in easy setup and provisioning of devices, smaller and more affordable designs and development of apps for iOS. The ConnectSense Smart Outlet also represents the first generation of devices that are Apple HomeKit-enabled allowing for great features such as Siri voice control, end-to-end encryption and ease of use.

The ConnectSense product line allows Grid Connect to prove out its technology at scale and improve it over time. This allows us to then take that same great technology and help customers implement IoT solutions in their own products. Rather than starting from scratch, our customers benefit from our wealth of knowledge developing IoT products. This allows for quick time to market, lower cost implementations and less custom work required on projects.


To discuss development partner solutions for your company, please call the Grid Connect office at +1 (800) 975-GRID or fill out the form here.

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Companies help animate Naperville North robotics projects

[fa icon='calendar'] Jan 23, 2015 2:46:03 PM / by Brittney Borowicz posted in connectsense, Create Cut Invent, engineering, engineers, Exelon, Featured In, FIRST Robotics Competition, General, Grid Connect, Huskie Robotics, Lextech, Mark Rowzee, mentor, Molex, Motorola, Naperville, Naperville Central, Naperville North High School, Naperville Sun, Navistar, NNHS, robot

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What is 6-foot 5-inches tall and can haul recycling totes and bins to the curb?

For members of the Huskie Robotics Team at Naperville North High School, the answer is obvious. It’s their new robot.

More than 70 students from Naperville North, as well as a handful of Naperville Central students, are building a tall, 120-pound robot as part of this year’s FIRST Robotics Competition.

The Huskie Robotics Team would not be able to function without the assistance of corporate sponsors, said robotics sponsor and science teacher, Mark Rowzee.

Not only do the companies provide monetary support, but many send mentors to work with students.

On any given night, six or seven engineering and other professionals will be on hand to offer whatever help students need. Rowzee estimated mentors devoted more than 300 hours of assistance last year.

This year, Molex and the Exelon Corp. joined the long list of Huskie Robotics sponsors that include Navistar, Grid Connect, Create Cut Invent, ConnectSense, the Motorola Solutions Foundation and Lextech.

Read more at the Naperville Sun.

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