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Inspiring the Next Generation: Unfolding the Success of SMG / BMW Umhlanga AI Day

As we stride further into the technological age, it is becoming ever more crucial that we equip our younger generations with the right tools and knowledge to navigate this evolving landscape. This was precisely the objective behind the Robotics & AI Day hosted on Saturday, March 11, 2023, by AlgoAtWork Robotics Academy in partnership with SMG / BMW Umhlanga and Arm(E3)NGAGE.

The event, held at the cutting-edge Umhlanga Arch, emerged as a groundbreaking initiative that seamlessly combined the joy of learning with fun for kids and parents alike. Over 60 participants aged 9-14 years, along with their parents, from Durban, Pietermaritzburg, and Richards Bay, witnessed an unforgettable experience that unveiled the fascinating world of robotics and artificial intelligence fundamentals.

Expert facilitator, Tshega Mampshika, ensured the day was brimming with educational and engaging activities. The kids were immersed in interactive coding and robotics masterclasses, covering a variety of intriguing topics. From the introduction to robotics, different types of sensors, to coding on Arduino IDE and applying code to make their prototype function, the lessons were designed to foster creativity, critical thinking, and collaborative skills among the attendees. The result was a fun-filled day of learning, innovation, and interactive STEM education.

While the children indulged in their masterclasses, the parents were not left behind. Mongezi Tembe and Kirstern Bayley from SMG introduced them to the future of mobility by arranging test drives in the all-new, fully electric BMW iX40 and i4. This opportunity served as a real-world example of how advancements in technology are shaping our world, thus directly linking to what their children were exploring during the day.

The SMG Robotics & AI Day also marked the commencement of a partnership between BMW Umhlanga and AlgoAtWork Robotics Academy. This collaboration aims to extend the reach of educational programs like these to underprivileged communities, thereby furthering the cause of democratizing access to technology education.

Reflecting on the day, Mxolisi Ndlovu, Head of Customer Relations, expressed his enthusiasm about the event’s success and the prospects it opened up for the attendees. “We are thrilled to partner with SMG/BMW Umhlanga and Arm(E3)NGAGE to bring this groundbreaking collaboration to the KZN community," he said. “We are excited to see how the kids who attended will apply what they learned in their future endeavors and hopefully see them join the Academy to get even more knowledge about Robotics and AI.”

Adding to the excitement, the children were bestowed with goodie bags from BMW and a chance to win numerous prizes. They left the venue with not only knowledge but also a sense of achievement and wonder, making the event a truly memorable family day.

The success of the Robotics & AI Day signifies the power of partnerships in driving technological education forward. It paves the way for further collaborations that can inspire and educate our future leaders, innovators, and creators.


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