A local chapter of a National Engineering and Manufacturing Professionals Organization has joined the West Ashley High School VEX Robotics team.
Well, sort of.
Recently, Dick Tiano, chapter chair of the SME Greater Charleston Chapter 430, presented the team with a sizable donation to support the 10-kid club with its future competitions, which begin again in earnest in the spring.
Tiano, a mechanical engineer by training who now does program managing for SCRA, said it was important for the local chapter to keep reaching out.
“On top of working with kids being one of our collective passions,” said Tiano. “It’s my opinion if we don’t do a good job of helping kids understand what manufacturing and engineering is in this age, we could have a generation gap of kids who don’t what it means to be a engineer.”
WAHS is one of three schools the local chapter, which has more than 140 members, supports.
The WAHS team is lead by Phil Beyel, who, as part of his job in the school’s career and technology education department, also teaches computer classes.
The robot team takes part in regional and statewide competitions, where robots they design and build complete various tasks against the clock, and other schools’ teams times.

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