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As the Program Delivery Organization for FIRST Robotics in NWFL, and in an effort to inspire and support many STEM efforts in the local community, each year the Doolittle Institute seeks out professionals and subject matter experts to serve on a panel, to provide feedback and guidance to budding innovators.

The topic of the panel changes from year to year, this year’s edition focused on cargo transportation logistics.  The event’s mission is to inspire students interested in solving problems related to the transportation of goods, and transportation systems. Very fitting given the supply chain shortages the United States is currently suffering from.

On October 26, 2021, from 4 PM-5 PM, over 100 registrants signed on asking our panel, moderated by Brian Mitchell, Pipeline Coordinator, AFRL, RWO, the “hard” questions of our six panelists that included:

  • Alex Barthe’, Franchisee, UPS Store
    • Michael Beedie, City Manager, City of Fort Walton Beach
    • David Johnson, Industrial Designer/Engineer
    • Christopher Saul, Drone Pilot
    • Ken Weeks, Lead Drone Instructor, Unmanned Systems Institute
    • Blake Gasaway, Chief Logistics Officer, American Eagle Fence

Attendees were asked to pre-submit questions, which were addressed first by the panel, then the panel moved to live questions submitted by attendees. Not all questions were addressed in our one-hour allotment of time, but panelists graciously agreed to continue answering questions offline, for later delivery to attendees. Both students and panelists expressed mutual inspiration, and desire to continue the conversation in future events.

One of the attendees, after the event, informed a STEM Team member that the event was better than one she had recently attended, hosted by Amazon.

To see the video click HERE