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We are in the midst of an historic transformation, and the vast field of robotics is having an impact unlike any other emerging technology. Autonomous robots are contributing to increases in productivity, safety, and efficiency in so many fields—healthcare, agriculture, manufacturing, construction, and transportation, to name just a few. As we assign more and more of our repetitive tasks to robots, we are being liberated to pursue more creative, ambitious, and intellectual achievements.
The Udacity Robotics Nanodegree Program
We are so excited today to announce our new Robotics Nanodegree program. In partnership with Electric Movement, we have built the ideal program to train the next generation of engineers who are going to redefine the way we live and work.
“When it comes to moving robotics projects from conceptual design through prototyping, manufacturing, and production, we have real-world experience, and we’re excited to bring this to Udacity’s virtual classroom as we teach tomorrow’s engineers the philosophies and skills they’ll need to build the robots of the future —Dan Reuter, Founder and CEO, Electric Movement
We are also thrilled to introduce as hiring partners the leading-edge companies that will fast track our graduates for job consideration at their companies: Bosch, iRobot, Kuka, Lockheed Martin, MegaBots, Uber ATG, and X, Alphabet’s Moonshot Factory.
Our program will focus on numerous robotics applications, and feature a curriculum developed with top robotics engineers. Students will learn robotics fundamentals such as navigation, perception, artificial intelligence, and hardware control (actuators). Through a series of unique projects, students will have the opportunity to apply the techniques they’ve learned to construct robotic solutions first in a simulated environment, then on real hardware.
Additionally, students will benefit from the expert project review, career support, and exclusive hiring partner access that are features of all our leading Nanodegree programs. Graduates will emerge from the program uniquely equipped to assume key roles in the robotics field.
With spending on robotics and related services set to top the $135 billion mark within two years, the need for a program like Udacity’s Robotics Nanodegree program is clear. Meeting this kind of demand will require an extraordinary influx of talent, and that is exactly what our program will produce—extraordinary talent.
The Impact of Robotics
Whole industries are being reshaped as autonomous robots take on functions previously performed by human operators, and simultaneously perform feats beyond human capabilities. New opportunities are going to skyrocket, and while it’s inevitable that some jobs are going to change or even disappear over time, it’s also clear that robotics will create significantly more opportunities than it eliminates. Organizations like the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Institute foresee the creation of over 500,000 new U.S. manufacturing jobs alone in the coming decade.
Robotics offers innovative solutions for some of our greatest challenges—as we confront the dangers of everything from natural disasters to modern warfare, robots are enabling us to stay safer, and respond faster. As we wrestle with the reality of global food shortages, agricultural robotics are emerging as a means to maximize efficiency and productivity. As we face expectations that the percentage of the world’s population that is aged 65 or older will triple by 2050, robots are being used for automating home-care activities and providing therapeutic comfort and caregiving.
The stakes aren’t quite so high in every use case, of course. Robots are also helping organize stockrooms, serve drinks, fill prescriptions, clean homes and offices, and more. The truth is, virtually every industry out there is going to benefit from the rapid rise of robotics, and demand for robotics talent is going to be intense. Our hiring partners know this, and it’s a big part of why they’re so excited about this program:
Lockheed Martin operates in a global environment of unprecedented volatility and dynamic change, and technology is advancing at a very rapid pace. We know that expertise in autonomy and robotics will be critical to meeting these challenges, and that’s why we’re proud to partner with Udacity on the Robotics Nanodegree program to hire the brightest minds who will help us create the brightest future. –Travis Coomer, VP Engineering & Technology
From the start, we wanted to build an experience on par with the best robotics programs out there, while continuing to make world-class learning opportunities like this one widely available at a global level. Achieving this in a field like robotics is no easy feat. The expertise required to build the curriculum must be of the highest level. Project reviewers must possess rarefied degrees of experience. The software and hardware requirements necessary to execute at this level are extremely intensive.
Through the coming together of several critical factors, we are now able to offer the program we’ve dreamed of and worked on for so long. These factors include our invaluable curriculum partnership with Electric Movement; an enhanced classroom experience that enables the seamless creation, delivery, and maintenance of cutting-edge content; a pricing model that gets the resources and commitments in place when and where they’re most needed; and the hard work of an incredible internal team of instructors, engineers, mentors, and managers committed to delivering the best student experience possible.
As with other advanced Nanodegree programs, there is an application process to enroll. This process allows us to assess each applicant’s qualifications, and either accept them to the program, or make recommendations for courses that will help them meet the prerequisites so they can truly succeed in the program. The program is offered in a two-term model, with each term having fixed start and end dates. Each term lasts for 3 months, and students should assume a minimum time commitment of 15 hours per week. The total Nanodegree cost is $2,400.
The Evolution Of Intelligence
“I ultimately got into robotics because for me, it was the best way to study intelligence.” —Sebastian Thrun
Inside of every aspiring robotics engineer beats the heart of someone fascinated by human intelligence—both its potential, and its limits. Robotics as a field may be our most compelling response yet to the truth of our own capacities. Where we have abilities, robots extend them. Where we have shortcomings, robots make up for them. Humans built airplanes because we couldn’t fly on our own in the sky. We built submarines because we couldn’t survive on our own underwater. Robots represent another gigantic leap forward in our quest to reach beyond our perceived limits, and graduates of this program will be at the forefront of determining where this amazing quest leads us next.
Apply for the Robotics Nanodegree program today, and join the next generation of engineers who are going to change the world!