33 robotics teams compete in FIRST R.I. Championship at NEIT

New England Tech is proud to support FIRST Robotics because it is so much more than robots.

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From the Providence Journal

Patrick Anderson
Journal Staff Writer

WARWICK — Months of fundraising, planning and community events completed, Saturday was all about the robots.

Dozens of the metal-armed machines, middle and high school students at their controls, wheeled their way across the floor of the host New England Institute of Technology’s automotive center in an all-day competition as confusing to the uninitiated as the circuits that power the robots.

They scooped up rubber balls. They climbed obstacle-strewn ramps. Sometimes they flipped over.

And for the 10th straight year, a select few teams — Rhode Rage 1 from Aquidneck Island Robotics, the Westerly Bulldogs from Westerly High and North Robotics from North Kingstown High — earned a spot in the FIRST Tech Challenge’s regional finals in March against teams from up and down the East Coast.

“It is getting more challenging every year: more teams, more kids on each team and the games are different every year,” said Rick Powell, team mentor for North Kingstown High School’s three entrants in the FIRST Rhode Island Championship.

Over the last 20 years, school robotics has grown from a science class novelty to an educational phenomenon, with competitions in every state, teams in most school districts and students spending hours after school preparing for events.

And while engineering still lies at the heart of most robotics contests, the teams have become more than a refuge for tinkerers.

Within North Kingstown’s teams are building groups, software groups, design groups (for the logo) and “notebook” groups that record everything, Powell said.

The 33 teams that made it to the state finals Saturday — another 23 were eliminated in three preliminary rounds — represent 24 schools and extracurricular groups with different resources and robotics histories.

Source: 33 robotics teams compete in FIRST R.I. Championship at NEIT

U.S. News & World Report Ranks NEIT Online Programs #1 in RI

East Greenwich, RI – U.S. News & World Report released its 2016 Best Online Programs on January 12, 2016, a resource used by millions of domestic and international students to compare the academic quality of more than 1,200 bachelor’s and master’s level distance degree programs offered at colleges and universities across the country.  Dr. Douglas H. Sherman, Senior Vice President and Provost at New England Institute of Technology (NEIT), announced that the university has earned the No.1 spot in Rhode Island for its online bachelor’s degree programs and was ranked 3rd in New England as well as 49th nationally.

For the fifth year, the U.S. News Best Online Programs report is used by students and working adults seeking online education programs to complete their degree or advance their career while maintaining a flexible schedule that suits their lifestyle. Prospective students search the directory to explore factors such as program offerings, tuition, and online services.

To be considered in the bachelor level rankings, only degree-granting programs offered predominately online at regionally accredited colleges and universities are reviewed. The various methodologies used are based on such factors as faculty credentials and training, student services and technology, and student engagement. For more information on the Best Online Program rankings and methodologies, visit www.usnews.com/online.

“Online learning is becoming an integral part of higher education, and consumers are hungry for information related to legitimate online degrees,” said Anita Narayan, managing editor of Education at U.S. News. “The Best Online Programs rankings can help prospective students begin their search for a program that suits both their academic and career goals, as well as their work and family schedules.”

About U.S. News & World Report

U.S. News & World Report is a global digital news and information company that empowers people to make better, more informed decisions about important issues affecting their lives. Focusing on Education, Health, Personal Finance, Travel, Cars and News & Opinion, www.usnews.com provides consumer advice, rankings, news and analysis to serve people making complex decisions throughout all stages of life. 30 million people visit www.usnews.com each month for research and guidance. Founded in 1933, U.S. News is headquartered in Washington, D.C.

About New England Institute of Technology

Under the leadership of President Richard I. Gouse, New England Institute of Technology is a private, non-profit, technical college with an enrollment of more than 3,000 students and is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc. Founded in 1940, New England Tech now offers more than 50 associate, bachelor’s, master’s and online degree programs.  For more information, visit www.neit.edu or contact the Admissions office at 800-736-7744 or by email at NEITAdmissions@neit.edu.

NEIT lab puts charge in student training – Providence Business News

Fantastic story from the Providence Business News about how New England Tech is training students for today’s manufacturing jobs.

STATE OF THE ART: New England Institute of Technology assistant professor Michael Eggeman and NEIT sophomore Gillian Eminger of Scituate examine the FMS- 200 in the newly completed automation lab for the school’s electrical engineering program. PBN PHOTO/ MICHAEL SALERNO

Source: NEIT lab puts charge in student training – Providence Business News

(Updated Jan. 19)

Stephen Koester, 23, prepared last fall to intern this academic quarter at the Providence office of Woodard & Curran, by using equipment in New England Institute of Technology’s updated electrical engineering lab.

The Portland, Maine-based environmental engineering firm is one of a handful that has a longstanding relationship with the school and hiring NEIT graduates, said NEIT alum and Woodard & Curran controls engineer Jeff Souza.

“When we go to the job fair, we look for people with good technical background [and] hands-on experience,” Souza said. “The equipment in the new lab is very up to date. The graduates come in and can do more things than graduates from other programs at other schools right off the bat.”

Launched about four years ago, the revamped Electrical Engineering Industrial Automation Lab has been upgraded with equipment to give practical, real-world experience, said assistant professor Michael Eggeman. Koester, a senior, has used the lab and is eager to see what he can do.

“We got to see the different type of controllers, like the Proportional Integral Derivative, [in which] the system tries to recalibrate back to a set point number,” explained Koester, likening the effect to that on a cruise-control system in a car. “The lab has a lot of up-to-date, relevant technology; it just gets us more used to what we might see when we graduate.”

NEIT installed equipment for the lab’s second phase of development last spring, and Koester was one of the first students to use a so-called process-control training rig, in which he and his peers could learn how to control the pressure, flow and level of fluids.

While the students use water in the hands-on lessons for safety, the control rig has applicability in such areas as pharmaceuticals and water treatment systems, where chemicals are used, Eggeman said.

About 50 students a year are enrolled in NEIT’s 18-month electrical engineering bachelor’s degree program, which is undertaken following completion of the 18-month electrical technology associate degree, the professor said.

In addition to the process control training rig, Eggeman said, there are six workstations that give hands-on experience, and four others called the Flexible Manufacturing System, or FMS 200.

Up and running in fall 2014, the six workstations provide real equipment, like a motor, for instance, instead of so-called “trainer cases,” which hold devices in a suitcase-like container and only simulate the effect of correct electrical engineering coding.

So, when a student correctly writes and programs electrical code to control the function of a pump or motor, instead of a light turning on the way it does in a trainer case to show it’s working properly, the pump or motor at a workstation will kick into action, he said.

While the trainer cases are still in use, Eggeman said, “Slowly but surely, we’re rolling the workstations into the classes and the curriculum.”

Students also learn how to communicate over several industrial automation networks.

Built about eight years ago, the FMS 200 more realistically simulates the manufacturing environment in which component pieces are assembled into a final, though still simulated, product. It is used primarily for troubleshooting exercises by testing for 48 different potential bugs, Eggeman said.

Originally located on the Warwick campus, these stations were underutilized by associate degree students and consequently moved to the East Greenwich campus in early 2015, he said.

“It completed the lab,” he explained. “It allowed us to have a system in there so I could go in as the instructor and flip a couple of switches behind a locked door and all of a sudden the system doesn’t work anymore and students have to troubleshoot why.”

Eddie DiPasquale, 22, of Mahopac, N.Y., is an NEIT senior who has been writing code for programmable logic controllers, where a computer controls product production. The lab provides experience, not just textbook knowledge, he said.

“It gives you a real-world application in a classroom setting,” DiPasquale said. “We’re using equipment that gets used in the field. I think it gives us a competitive edge, because we actually get to use the equipment hands-on.”

Souza’s firm and Eric Freitas, president of the Control Automation Group in Warwick, say they’ve hired several NEIT graduates over the past few years. Souza has hired 20 for a staff that numbers about 40, while Freitas has hired five for a staff of about 20.

“All the components I use to design a machine, [NEIT students] are exposed to that in the lab, so they already know what it is and what it does,” Freitas said. •

U.S. News: NEIT improves in ranking of best 2016 online bachelor’s programs – Providence Business News

This is so exciting!  New England Tech jumped 91 spots to rank 49th in the country of the best 2016 online bachelor’s programs by U.S. News.

Below is from PBN:

NEW ENGLAND Institute of Technology is ranked 49th – up from 140th – in the U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of 300 of the best 2016 online bachelor’s programs.

Source: U.S. News: NEIT improves in ranking of best 2016 online bachelor’s programs – Providence Business News

PROVIDENCE – New England Institute of Technology is ranked 49th – up from 140th – in the U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of 290 of the best 2016 online bachelor’s programs.

“New England Institute of Technology rose in the ranking in part because they performed better on measures involving its course delivery, such as faculty preparedness to teach distance learners and support services available to distance learners,” said Eric Brooks, a senior data analyst at U.S. News, in an email.

“Online learning is becoming an integral part of higher education, and consumers are hungry for information related to legitimate online degrees,” said Anita Narayan, managing editor of education at U.S. News, in a press release. “The Best Online Programs rankings can help prospective students begin their search for a program that suits both their academic and career goals, as well as their work and family schedules.”

Methodologies are based on a variety of factors, including student engagement, faculty credentials and student services and technology. Only degree-granting programs at regionally accredited institutions that are offered predominantly online are considered.

If you would like additional information about any of New England Tech’s over 50 Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s and online degree programs contact the Admissions Office at 800-736-7744 or email NEITAdmissions@neit.edu

More Information | Apply Now

 

NEIT to Host FIRST® Robotics Competition

East Greenwich, RI – New England Institute of Technology (NEIT) will sponsor the tenth annual FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Tech Challenge on Saturday, January 30, 2016, from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Serving as Rhode Island’s FIRST® Tech Challenge Affiliate Partner, NEIT will host 33 middle and high school robotics teams for the state competition at the university’s Center for Automotive Technology located at 101 Access Road, Warwick, Rhode Island.

Accomplished inventor, Dean Kamen, founded FIRST® in 1989 to inspire students with an appreciation of science and technology through the fun of robotics. The goal is to engage students in developing problem solving, critical thinking, and innovative reasoning skills using custom-designed robots.  Middle school and high school teams will compete for the chance to participate at the FIRST® state, regional and world championships.

More than 55 Rhode Island middle and high school teams have registered for this high-energy event. Qualifier competitions were held on December 5th and December 19th with one more qualifier scheduled for January 9, 2016, at NEIT’s East Greenwich campus located at One New England Tech Blvd.  These qualifier competitions determine which 33 teams advance to the state tournament. Winners of the state competition will travel to the East Super-Regional FIRST® competition in Scranton, Pennsylvania in March, 2016. Top teams from the four Super-Regional tournaments will earn a spot at the FIRST® World Championship in St. Louis, Missouri in April, 2016.

Qualifier competitions as well as the state tournament are free and open to the public.  For more information on the FIRST® Tech Challenge, please contact Erin Flynn, Manager of Admissions Outreach and Events at New England Tech at 401-739-5000, ext. 3462 or eflynn@neit.edu. To learn more about the FIRST® organization, please visit www.usfirst.org.

Retirement Wishes

 

Congratulations to three outstanding faculty members who have served New England Institute of Technology so well for many years. We wish them good health and much happiness in their retirement years.

Dav Cranmer – 31 years

Professor/Department Co-chair, Humanities and Social Sciences Department

Jo-Ann Fielding – 31 years

Associate Professor/Department Chair, Clinical Medical Assistant Technology Program

Mike Markarian – 7 years

Director of Plumbing, Heating & Refrigeration/Air Conditioning Technology Program

Welcome to the NEIT Community

The New England Tech college community welcomes the following individuals and wishes them continued success in their new positions. 

Brian LaCheppel

Brian Lachapelle

Brian Lachapelle – Admission Officer 

Prior to joining NEIT, Brian served as the Director of Admissions at The Salter School, New Bedford, MA; Admissions Representative at Everest Institute, Brighton, MA; Assistant Director of Admissions at Salter College, West Boylston, MA; and High School Admissions Representative, Gibbs College, Cranston, RI. Brian also was employed at Bank of America, Providence, as a Small Business Specialist. He received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Rhode Island College.

Andrea R

Andrea Raciti

Andrea Raciti – High School Representative 

Prior to joining NEIT, Andrea was an outside Admissions Representative for Lincoln Educational Services in Hartford, CT. She also held the position of Assistant Director of Admissions at the Art Institute of Tampa, Florida.  Andrea will represent NEIT in the Vermont and southern New Hampshire high schools. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from the University of Massachusetts/Amherst.

Automation Lab Features New Training Equipment

12-Automation LabThe Electrical Engineering Technology department has completed the installation of its new Lab-Volt® 3531 Process Control Training System.  The equipment, which was purchased through a $117,000 grant from the Champlin Foundations, was installed in the department’s Automation Lab located in room S351.  The training system will be used by both Electrical Engineering Technology and Mechanical Engineering Technology students for process measurement and control classes in the respective Bachelor of Science degree programs.  The courses will prepare students for today’s high-tech methods of process control techniques in the areas of flow, pressure and level.  The equipment installation completes the second phase of the Automation Lab.  Faculty from both departments completed a two-day training session provided by Lab-Volt®.

For more information on NEIT’s Electrical Engineering Technology and Mechanical Engineering Technology degree programs, contact the Admissions Office at 800-736-7744, by email at NEITAdmissions@neit.edu or visit www.neit.edu.

SAMI Turns Two!

Sami Group

l-r: Sean Davies, Electric Boat; Rep. Patricia Sepe; Rep. Lou Raptakis; Karl Wadensten, Vibco; Matthew Topper,SAMI Welding Instructor; Senator Sheldon Whitethouse; Mayor Scott Avedisian; Kathy Partington, SAMI, Client Services Representative; Congressman David Cicilline; Congressman Jim Langevin; Steve Kitchin, NEIT, Vice President for Corporate Education and Training; Maria Rivera, SAMI Outreach Case Liaison; Senator Jack Reed; Todd Sposato, SAMI Project Assistant Machinist Trainer; Cynthia Toti, SAMI Program Case Manager; Lt. Governor Dan McKee; Catherine Cilcius, NEIT Administrative Assistant; Fred Santinello, Director of Workforce Grants and Programs; Amanda Handfield, SAMI Administrative Assistant; Michael Senerchia, SAMI Case Manager; Bob Palumbo, Project Coordinator.

The Shipbuilding/Marine Trades and Advanced Manufacturing Institute (SAMI) celebrated its second birthday on Friday, November 13, 2015, at the Post Road campus. The celebration included accolades from the members of the Rhode Island congressional delegation. They complimented NEIT and the SAMI faculty for their efforts in training 200 unemployed Rhode Islanders in just two years for careers in welding and advanced manufacturing. Special thanks to Senator Jack Reed, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Congressman James Langevin, and Congressman David Cicilline for their continued support of the SAMI program.

Also bringing greetings at the celebration were Rhode Island Lieutenant Governor Daniel McKee and Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian, along with SAMI employers Sean Davies, Facilities Manager at General Dynamics/Electric Boat, and Karl Wadensten, President of VIBCO Vibrators.

Following the speaking program, guests enjoyed tours of the SAMI facilities, lunch, and of course, birthday cake. Congratulations to the SAMI faculty, staff, and students for making the SAMI program such a great success.

Technical Advisory Committee Meeting

Wade Gibson

l-r: Dr. Doug Sherman, Senior VP and Provost with Wade Gibson

The Crown Plaza in Warwick, RI, was the venue for the 2015 Technical Advisory Committee Appreciation Dinner held on November 12th. This annual gathering is hosted by the Office of Teaching and Learning and offers faculty and staff the opportunity to meet with their respective technical advisors. The advisors are dedicated technical experts who offer their time and expertise to keep the college abreast of industry changes so that all NEIT programs incorporate the latest skills sought by today’s employers.

This year’s guest speaker was Wade Gibson, Chief of Staff, of the Executive Office of the Rhode Island Commerce Corporation. Known as CommerceRI, this full-service agency is the official economic development organization for the state of Rhode Island and serves as a government and community resource to help streamline the business expansion in, and relocation to, Rhode Island. Mr. Gibson shared his insights regarding the various marketing and incentive programs that CommerceRI is promoting to attract new businesses to the State. He spoke about the “Waymaker Fellowship” program where students may be reimbursed a portion of their college expenses to make it more attractive for them to work in Rhode Island after graduation. He commended New England Tech for the active role it plays in training students to meet the demands of today’s competitive workplace.