By Devin Partida
Because of today’s advanced technology, robots are the next big thing. Robots can help streamline processes and reduce human error, and a job in robotics can offer plenty of growth and a competitive salary.
If you are a robotics or STEM educator, here are some steps for helping students in their robotics career journey — especially if your students are interested in pursuing a robotics career within the government.
Obtaining a bachelor's degree is often the first step in any career. Help students find an accredited university specializing in robotics or electrical engineering — they can benefit from a mechanical engineer background to operate the machinery. Software development skills can be instrumental to robotics, too. Help students look for a program that combines electrical computers, mechanical engineering and co-ops that could help provide real-world experiences.
Here are a few schools students may want to check out:Northeastern University
University of Pennsylvania
Georgia Institute of Technology
Stevens Institute of Technology
While earning a degree, students need to get outside experience. Joining a club on campus is a fun way for undergraduates to meet new people and sharpen their skills. The projects are great resume builders and give students something to discuss during interviews.
Some schools also compete in robotic competitions. These help get students recognized by employers. If there isn't a club available, work with the chair of student activities to get one started.Help Them Find Internships
Internships are another way to get hands-on experience. These allow students to learn new skills and see what field interests them. Internships look great on resumes and prepare students for higher-level courses and certification exams. Plus, internships could lead to potential job connections.
Help students find internships by working with the career center at the school. Also, advise students to reach out to alumni who entered into engineering fields. You could even offer mock interview sessions to prepare them for the real deal.
Ensure They Gain Certifications The next step is for students to start gaining certifications in their desired field. Ask them what area they want to enter, such as design engineer or data scientist. Then research the certification required for that specialization.
An artificial intelligence certification is a good one to obtain — it prepares you to work with the technology and opens more doors. The Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) and
the Master Certified Electronics Technician is popular as well.Assist Them in Landing a Job
Once a student has the academic experience, it's time to start looking for a job. Networking is an important part. For example, they should use any connections from internships. Another idea is connecting with governmental officials and engineers on LinkedIn.
Advise students to join professional organizations like the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence. To find jobs, search different online resources like usa.gov or governmentjobs.com.Promote Getting a Master's Degree
Many students may work first before getting a master's degree. This is beneficial because they can see what field they want to specialize in. It also better allows them to meet all the requirements for that role. For example, some engineering roles may need a Master of Business Administration.
Suppose they prefer working more in management — you can help them search for a degree focusing on that. Plus, business administration is an excellent skill for a federal career path. A master's degree also provides higher-paying jobs and enhances their skills.Ensure They Understand the Federal Hiring Process
The federal hiring process may be more complex than a traditional position, so encourage students to have detailed resumes. Include specifics about the experience level, hours worked and job responsibilities. Quantify the roles as much as possible. For example, did the undergraduate grow the company's profit by a certain percentage? Then, remember there are two types of non-executive federal government positions. They are:Competitive Service: Competitive service positions depend on the civil service laws passed by Congress.
Excepted Service: The President of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management decides these roles
Most jobs are open to the public, but some are for current or former federal employees. Know which ones your students are eligible for. Many federal jobs also have strict requirements. They may include being a U.S. citizen, meeting certain clearance levels and passing a drug test.
Steps to Getting a Robotics Career The rise of artificial intelligence has expanded the demand for robotic engineers. Students can take on many roles, from engineers to designers. Follow these tips to guide your undergraduates into fulfilling government careers.
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About the author, Devin Partida. Devin@rehack.com