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Motlow State Community College now an ABB Robotics Education Affiliate

POSTED 07/25/2019

Certified training classes began in May at the new Automation & Robotic Training Center on the McMinnville, TN campus

  • More than 125 students expected to receive robotic training at Motlow Robotics Lab in 2019
  • Adding Motlow to ABB’s affiliate program is an important step in preparing the local workforce for future jobs in robotics
  • Initial classes dedicated to ABB customer certified robot training began in May. In August
    robotics classes and degrees begin for enrolled students

Motlow State Community College ( in McMinnville, Tennessee is a new member of the ABB Robotics Affiliate Education Program. In May 2019, ABB instructors began teaching certificate training classes at the recently built Automation & Robotic Training Center (ARTC) adjacent to the Motlow campus.

The 12,500 square-foot ARTC has a dedicated ABB Robotics lab equipped with six 6-axis ABB robots and robot controllers, and all the necessary software and peripheral equipment to teach ABB customers how to program and operate ABB industrial robots. Students who successfully complete the training earn comprehensive qualification as an ABB customer certified robot professional in the specific curriculum area of focus.

Motlow is ABB’s sixth US affiliate training facility and continues ABB’s strategic plan to establish certified training campuses throughout North America where customers have more access to comprehensive training and certification. It is expected that approximately 125 students will receive training at Motlow in 2019.

“Adding Motlow to our affiliate education program is an important step in ensuring that we prepare the workforce with the skills needed to transform productivity and keep pace with technology,” said Joe Chudy, US general manager, ABB Robotics.  “The answer in creating the manufacturing jobs of the future lies in education. We must train the workforce of today and adapt education for the workforce of tomorrow.”

As the relationship progresses ABB will train and certify Motlow instructors to teach the robotics classes, providing all the required professor certification, curriculum materials and ongoing support. Beginning in August 2019 Motlow will offer its enrolled students robotics classes at the ARTC for college credit and robotics degrees.  Motlow instructors will also begin teaching the ABB customer certification courses later this year.

Funding for the ARTC came from a $5.5 million grant awarded to Motlow as part of the “Drive to 55 Capacity Fund.” The primary purpose of the ARTC is to train skilled workers to support existing and new industries throughout the area as they utilize more industrial robots. Construction began in June 2018. The official opening and dedication ceremony took place April 26th, 2019.

The initial ABB customer certified classes being taught at Motlow are:

  • US420 IRC5 Programming I for Material Handling
  • US425 IRC5 Programming II for Material Handling
  • US399 RobotStudio I

In addition to its own North American training facilities in Auburn Hills, MI and San Jose, CA, ABB Robotics now has affiliate training facilities at Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, AL; Vincennes University in Vincennes, IN; Robotics Technology Park in Tanner, AL; Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, WI; Piedmont Technical College in Laurens, SC; and now Motlow.

ABB (ABBN: SIX Swiss Ex) is a pioneering technology leader with a comprehensive offering for digital industries. With a history of innovation spanning more than 130 years, ABB is today a leader in digital industries with four customer-focused, globally leading businesses: Electrification, Industrial Automation, Motion, and Robotics & Discrete Automation, supported by its common ABB Ability™ digital platform. ABB’s market-leading Power Grids business will be divested to Hitachi in 2020. ABB operates in more than 100 countries with about 147,000 employees.

ABB Robotics is a pioneer in industrial and collaborative robots and advanced digital services. As one of the world’s leading robotics suppliers, we are active in 53 countries and over 100 locations and have shipped over 400,000 robot solutions in a diverse range of industries and applications. We help our customers to improve flexibility, efficiency, safety and reliability, while moving towards the connected and collaborative factory of the future.