Students at high schools participating in the Habele Robo League across the FSM are taking advantage of online training opportunities to develop new skills for their school robotics clubs. At Our Lady of Mercy Catholic High School in Pohnpei, seven students and a teacher recently completed a twenty-hour training course to become certified in the basics of VEX V5 robotics.
This course was introduced to schools in the 2019-20 school year through the Habele Certification Challenge, a program incentivizing staff and students to pursue individual learning, with an emphasis on developing opportunities for peer-to-peer instruction. This year, schools were again invited to participate in the certification challenge, with both new students and veteran students incentivized to grow their knowledge of core materials. Schools with a staff member and student earning certification were awarded a 3D printer to add a new dimension of hands on technical training for robotics clubs. Our Lady of Mercy Catholic High School was one of the first schools to add a 3D printer to their school’s STEM capacity, and continues to set the pace this year for students engaging in technical training and growth.
OLMCHS’s online robotics training is supported by a robust wireless network, which was equipped in the early days of the pandemic by a partnership between Habele and the Office of Insular affairs. This buildout of wireless capacity served the dual purpose of providing schools with the capacity to still make use of expatriate teachers (across a variety of subjects), and allowing robotics clubs to independently engage with STEM learning online.
Habele is a US nonprofit, established by former Peace Corps Volunteers, that serves students and schools across Micronesia. Habele provides tuition scholarships, book donations, tools for traditional craftsmen, and introduced high school-based robotics to the FSM in 2011. Support for the Robo League comes through a partnership with the Office of Insular Affairs.
Any student at a participating Robo League high school in Micronesia is invited to take the training challenge. All details can be found at www.habele.org/training.
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