- By: Ken Gracey Published: 28 November, 2016 0 comments
Taiwan has a rich university-level educational system. They aim to teach students the most relevant topics to prepare them for engineering careers. Their programs encompass many American learning ideals, including project-based learning and creative problem solving. The students are similar to our own. The big difference is that the university system has some experienced some declining enrollment. This has one benefit to students: engineering programs have adapted quickly to include robotics, Internet of Things (IoT) and programming courses. Taiwan has a progressive mindset about educating students on emerging technologies.
Last week I had the honorable opportunity of launching the China University of Technology’s Parallax Certified Professional (PCP) certificate program. The University of China now joins dozens of other engineering universities in Taiwan to offer the exclusive Parallax certificate through our distributor PlayRobot. Through the PCP certificate program, students truly learn by doing, a concept very familiar to the United States. PlayRobot has translated most of our material to Simplified Chinese and produced the exams necessary to issue the certificate. This particular certificate is for robotics and our newly-released Internet of Things (IoT) material you’ll see like we released last week.
This was my fourth visit to Taiwan so I was comfortable and prepared for the ceremonies. The Taiwan educational system is quite formal in some ways. Programs such as this are launched with university officials, signing of cooperative agreements, and an unveiling of new placards in front of the classroom. The distributor Martin Wang, Dean Jenn-Nan Chen and Vice President Bright Liao all spoke about the future of the program. I had the opportunity to present the course content and what the students will learn about programming and mechanics. I was also happy to promise more collaboration in the future (Parallax hosted two interns from Taiwan last year).
Taiwan is a warm country full of hospitality, amazingly fresh seafood and vegetables, and a culture that makes guests feel very comfortable. In fact, my hosts from PlayRobot took an extra couple of days so we could climb Mt. Yushan, a 12,996’ peak in the center of Taiwan. PlayRobot is owned by the Wang brothers Martin, Jelly and Robert. Together we formed a climbing team for a 17-hour hike up Mt. Yushan at the end of my visit.
I look forward to my next trip to the China University of Technology to show off our new WX Module - maybe this winter!
Ken Gracey, CEO, Parallax Inc.