Telecommuting Capability Becomes Reality Through Endowed Chair

A Message from Wendy Givoglu, Interim President, East and Winter Park Campuses

Meet Kevin, a Double 2 Telepresence Robot … named after a minion in Despicable Me! Professors of Computer Programming and Analytics Dave Brunick and Dennis Hunchuck received the 2019-2020 Dr. P. Phillips Endowed Chair in Education for the Physically Challenged for “Telepresence Robot: Enabling Classroom Attendance and Participation for Physically Challenged Students.” This robot allows students who want to be in class but are unable to be there physically, to attend classes remotely.

Kevin can be controlled remotely via internet. It is essentially an iPad on a Segway-type vehicle doing a FaceTime call. The September Valencia Technology Club officer’s meeting was the perfect place for Kevin’s first test run. The club’s president was out sick, so Dave and Dennis connected him to the robot, and the club president took control over Kevin’s movements for two hours. The president conversed with club officers and members while moving around the room with no prior training. It was a successful launch to say the least.

Since then, various students have been using Kevin to attend class on campus. The goal is to partner Kevin with the Office of Student Disabilities in spring 2020, so Dave and Dennis can understand better how Kevin’s capabilities and limitations may fit future needs of students.

Kevin also visited with the Child Life team at AdventHealth for Children on Wednesday, October 9, 2019, and provided one of their isolated patients in the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit the ability to tour the hospital and interact with a variety of people including members of the executive staff. This patient has been in the hospital for almost a year and had not ventured out of the hospital room. This was a truly exhilarating and humbling experience.

In addition, Kevin was showcased at the District Board of Trustees meeting on Wednesday, October 16, 2019, with a brief explanation of his capabilities and a question and answer session.

1 Comment

  • Anonymous said:

    Really cool stuff here

    PMThu, 07 Nov 2019 16:02:32 +0000Thu, 07 Nov 2019 16:02:32 +0000pm19,4:02 pm

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