5-week program teaches students about robotics

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A five week program involving JEA gave 20 high schoolers the chance to learn about robotics.

JEA partnered with the Jax Chamber and Renaissance Jax to put the program together. Davin Daniels, an 11th grader, was just one of the high schoolers excited to be part of it.

"This is actually, like, my first time ever experiencing anything dealing with robotics," Daniels said. "I see it on the news, but I've never hands-on dealt with a robot."

The program taught students the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) components of robotics. 

"The truth of it is the kids got an unparalleled experience because it's boot camp," said Mark McCombs, the founder of Renaissance Jax.

McCombs worked with leaders at JEA and the Jax Chamber to turn the cool technology venture into a practical application too.

"We really see it as, these kids really are the future of our community, as far as our workers," said Kris Rosenhauer, with JEA. "It's really great to get them the exposure to see what JEA does.”

"The future is really about the kids and developing an entrepreneurial spirit and laying a good foundation," said Carlton Robinson, with the Jax Chamber.

Sabino Martinez, an 11th grader at Atlantic Coast High School said he believes other teens should take advantage of an opportunity to attend the camp.

"It's more of a job opportunity and long-life learning," Martinez said.

Building and programming robots over the past month inspired the students to consider possible careers from staying in Jacksonville to venturing into space.

The Kids Hope Alliance is helping sponsor the next camp, which begins Monday. Click here for more information about the Renaissance Jax STEAM Powered Summer Camp.

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