Inventor of the first wearable insulin pump for diabetics, recipient of the prestigious 2015 Engelberger Award, and holder of 440 global patents - Dean Kamen has quite the resume and it doesn't stop there. Kamen is also the mastermind behind the Segway and the FDA approved prosthetic 'Luke Arm.' Thanks to Kamen's medical developments, millions of lives have seen drastic improvements over the past four decades due to revolutionary techniques in terms of diabetic treatment, chemotherapy, increased mobility and beyond.
With these accomplishments in mind, the Robotics Industries Association (RIA) is awarding Kamen with the prestigious Engelberger Award. Engelberger is said to be the 'Father of Robotics' and the title is awarded to leaders in the field who exemplify innovative thinking and outstanding accomplishments. Kamen will receive the award this year alongside ROBO strategic advisor Raffaello D'Andrea on Mon., March 23, 2015 in Chicago, IL in conjunction with the Automate Show.
Perhaps his most impactful project has been inspiring the love of science and technology into future generations for the past thirty years. Kamen founded the FIRST organization to ensure this mission. FIRST stands for 'For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology.' Founded in 1989, FIRST now hosts events all over the world to encourage young people to participate in fields of technology. The organization does so by incorporating mentors to help build science skills and ultimately foster confidence and leadership traits in day to day life.
Besides being an outlet for kids to come together and exchange ideas and showcase creations, the winners of FIRST competitions have a chance to win a portion of the $20 million scholarship fund. This scholarship fund helps ensure the continued study of science and technology at higher levels.
FIRST has become a globally recognized organization; its good has generated positive attention over the years, including in the pop culture world. Earlier this year, the movie 'Spare Parts' was released based off of a true FIRST underdog story.
With over 400,000 students participating in the FIRST organization this year alone, producing 34,000 robots, it's clear that FIRST and Kamen are working wonders in promoting the fields of science and technology to our future generations.
By: Erica Allaby, Content Manager, ROBO Global