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Madison College students win industrial robotics competition

Madison College students Schuyler Bostedt, Garrett Butler and Jonathan Stowell took first place in the Industrial Robotics Competition held during the Wisconsin Manufacturing and Technology Show October 8-10 in Milwaukee.

Bostedt, Butler and Stowell are enrolled in the Electromechanical Technology associate degree program.

The contest tested robotic programming knowledge by challenging students to complete a set of tasks on a Fanuc education robot in three hours.

The objective included program planning, end of arm tool selection, robot programming and teamwork.

A panel of experts judged the 23 teams on their ability to complete the assignment, efficiency, teamwork and robotics knowledge.

Peter Dettmer, robotics and automation instructor and electromechanical technology program director, says: “They had to show that they could apply learned concepts and skills to a new process they had not seen before.

“There were several ways to accomplish the task and they had to decide on the best method and share the work to get it done.”

The Madison College team won the college division earning a Fanuc M1iA 4-axis robot for their school. However, the team donated their prize to the winner of the high school division, Mayville High School.

Dettmer says: “High schools have more need to expose students to real-world industrial robots.

“We hope that having different types of robots in their facility will get them interested in how they can program and use them.”

The team received an all-expense paid trip to be featured at the International Manufacturing and Technology Show 2020 in Chicago.

Madison College was the first authorized Fanuc America training facility in the nation.

Renee Kirchner, CEO of contest sponsor LabMidwest, called Madison College’s robotics program “truly special”.

She praised Dettmer and program co-director, Rick Jacobs, for leadership and teaching that “sets students up for success”.