Engineering Education Enticement

Sept. 25, 2012
Phoenix Contact opens entry to its annual engineering contest for middle and high school students. The grand prize is a trip to Germany for the winning team.

For more than a decade it’s been nearly impossible to avoid all the pronouncements about the decline of engineering interest among students in much of the western world and in the U.S. in particular. Industry suppliers, manufacturing organizations, legislators and the media have all weighed in with ideas on how to best address issue and only time well tell which methods work best.

As part of its effort to boost engineering education, Phoenix Contact has announced that, for the fifth consecutive year, it is again holding its Nanoline contest. The contest, targeted at middle and high school students, challenges students to develop a working control system using Phoenix Contact’s Nanoline controller.

The Nanoline is a compact controller that can be used to automate basic tasks. Controller programming is done via Phoenix Contact’s nanoNavigator software, which allows programming via simple flow-charting or relay ladder logic. According to Phoenix Contact, no programming experience is necessary.

Judges will select the best project in February 2013, as part of Phoenix Contact’s National Engineers Week activities. In April, the winning team will represent Phoenix Contact USA at Hanover Fair, the world’s largest industrial tradeshow, in Hanover, Germany.

To register and learn more, visit Online registration runs through October 4, 2012.

“This contest is an opportunity to practice real-world engineering, project management and team-building skills,” said Jack Nehlig, president of Phoenix Contact USA. “Every year, the teams take these projects to a more advanced level, and we look forward to seeing this year’s creative ideas.”

Automation Worldrecently published a three-part series on the subject engineering education and this article has links to all three installments.

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