On My Own Technology

By On My Own Technology,
On My Own Technology Mr. Shekhar Jain and Mrs. Reetu Jain wanted to expand their son's Robotics horizon after he participated in a Robotics competition. They wanted to introduce him to newer forms of Robotics with more open programming platforms. However, they couldn't find any institute that offered out-of-the-box innovation style learning to curate a young mind and take it beyond the bookish solutions. It was at that time the Jain duo planned of starting out a Robotics Institute to curate curious minds with innovative thoughts of Robotics. They started developing courses and materials to create a more open inquiring mindset and most importantly an environment which will foster creativity and innovation in their institute On My Own Technology (OMOTEC).

OMOTEC encountered a lot of challenges at the beginning as the market for Robotics education was inclined towards the United States to return gentry and it was limited to extremely expensive Lego. It was a tough time even to get qualified engineers for teaching. It was an absolute enthusiastic nature of OMOTEC that has made the institute what it is today from that position.

"Surprisingly, lots of parents expressed a keen interest in Robotics education sessions that gave us hope to take Robotics learning beyond international schools to ICSC and SSC schools. We even started imparting Robotics education to the Regional Language Schools just to initiate Robotics and Lateral Thinking in the grassroots where it is needed the most. Most of the times we have seen that creativity, innovation, and learning come from students who really want to make a difference in the society," says Reetu Jain, Chief Mentor and Founder, OMOTEC.

Integrating Disciplines of Engineering in Curriculum
Since Robotics is an interdisciplinary skill covering
Mechanical, Electrical, Electronics, and Programming, there is no one way of approaching it. Students at OMOTEC are given an option of learning a pure programming language like Python and how to apply it to their daily life by using IOT mechanisms and Lego Programming. They are taught to create better output and control mechanisms for Robots. The curriculum strengthens the kinesthetic skills of each student."

"Robotics is an interdisciplinary skill covering Mechanical, Electrical, Electronics, and Programming, there is no one way of approaching it.

By mapping concepts of mathematics and physics to applied learning, OMOTEC imbibes STEM in its curriculum. The teachers who themselves are engineers deliver the classroom sessions by making it technically immersive and explorative. Apart from the 4 engineering branches, OMOTEC has teachers from the field of Mechatronics (one M.Tech and one Ph.D.), who bring the requisite experience to execute all the teaching sessions and innovative projects. They also help to develop the curriculum.

OMOTECH have students that created prototypes of innovative solutions like banana leaves for packaging materials and a retrofit solution to save 6 liters of water every day for every individual that uses Flexi Flush in their toilets. Another group of students have given a solution for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), Mumbai, to detect leakages in underground pipes of the city and save millions of gallons of water yearly. The students also developed 2 innovative products in the medical non-invasive instrumentation space. "The prototype and patenting for 1 product is already done with government funding, while for the other prototyping phase is underway," says Shekhar. Students at OMOTECH are taught to create better output and control mechanisms for robots right from IDEATION to EXECUTION. The curriculum strengthens the kinesthetic skills LOGICAL, CREATIVE AND LATERAL THINKING in each student by mapping concepts of Mathematics and Physics.

SUMMER workshops are a big hit among the students of OMOTEC.
It allows them to dabble in multiple types of Robotics skills on Simple Machine Building, 3D Printing, Drone building using Python. The OMOTECH youth in 2019 February presented a team of 12 children from Dharavi who were trained for 4 months on hardware, software coding. The youth participated in the First Tech Challenge held at Pune. The institute will continue to support the 12 children for the next 2 years.

Over the years, the institute has trained 1000+ students at its centers in Lokhandwala, Juhu, Powai, and Pune. It has become a Robotics partner in 16 schools where it offers training to close to 4800 students. Presently, OMOTEC has 5 World Awards and 13 National Awards in its showcase that it won for categories like Best Robot Design, Best Innovative Solution, and Best Project Award & Best Robo Run award in International Robotics Championships. OMOTEC has mentored students who qualified in the Nationals 2016 and Nationals 2018 research program IRIS (a partnership between Intel and Department of Science and Technology). The students are now qualified for Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF), the world's largest international pre-college science competition held annually in the U.S.

"We have people from IIT and various industries associated with us. They guide us in the innovation center which is purely focused on product innovation for commercialization. It brings a huge amount of research and development activities to the institute including things like Research Frameworks, Intellectual Property Capabilities, and Embedded Technologies. They help us in the successful implementation of the innovative projects," says Shekhar.

OMOTEC has more than 3000 sq feet of dedicated space for Innovation Lab with various instruments for prototyping like 3D printers, cutters, soldering machines, and laser machines. They want to extend their campus to reach out Government Schools, BMC Schools across Maharashtra. They also want to have more research papers published and have prototypes of at least 3 more products.