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VR training is coming to local classrooms

RCU receives funding to deliver software and headgear to GT school districts and EMCC.

Conventionally, classrooms or the workplace are where students in Career Technology Education programmes and workforce trainees gain the skills necessary for their professions. The Research and Curriculum Unit at Mississippi State University, however, intends to provide another choice as a result of $1.49 million in funding to supply virtual reality (VR) headgear and instructional technology.

In order to bring online curricula for subjects ranging from well‐being and health and mechanical engineering to cuisines and food service management into classrooms throughout the Golden Triangle, according to RCU Director of Research and Curriculum Betsey Smith. She spoke to The Dispatch publication that she and her associates are in the implementation stage of virtual reality headsets with educational technology.

Smith stated that she had tried out a few solutions previously. She elaborated that she was able to learn how to screw pipe fits, observe how to solder a bead, and even test out her cooking and cutting skills with the help of virtual reality technology

RCU invites ideas from businesses that create VR headsets and instructional resources via its portal. During the latter part of this year, Smith and her team will evaluate candidates and select a supplier before concluding the deal in December.

Commencing in the springtime of next year, Smith said RCU would distribute the headsets to schools in the Clay, Lowndes, Noxubee, Kemper and Oktibbehacounties in addition to Scooba and Columbus campuses of the East Mississippi Community College.

The gadgets given to the school districts will be used in the Career Technology Education programmes at the high schools and the Cyber Foundations classes in middle schools, in which students will have the ability to take classes in everything from metal processing to management studies from the convenience of their couches. According to Smith, these headsets will give more than 10 thousand pupils access to new educational avenues.

Pam Stafford, RCU’s Assistant Director of Business Operations, said that some of the pupils do not have the chance to go outside and explore what options can be availed. She explained that with the VR offering, they would be able to perceive opportunities beyond the limitations of their current place, which would open up a range of possibilities.

The Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District’s Millsaps Career and Technical Center’s director, Lenora Hogan, informed The Dispatch that her institution had previously used VR headsets. She claimed that allowing kids to learn from real-life situations without really being there is hugely helpful.

Speaking about the VR offering, she said that it gave students the opportunity to observe a profession in action. She added that the institution’s health science class was one that stood out for her. In this one, the users got the opportunity to really visit surgery simulations and examine various things.

The RCU will also give headgear to the EMCC facilities so that people in nearby industries may attend training for employment and workforce training opportunities. International Paper, the engine manufacturer PACCAR in Columbus, and OCH Regional Medical Center in Starkville are collaborators with RCU in the industry.

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