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Spring 2023 GRASP SFI: Michael Johnson, Philadelphia Robotics Coalition “Building STEM Equity through Robotics”

January 18, 2023 at 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

This is a hybrid event with in-person attendance in Levine 307 and virtual attendance via Zoom. 


Philadelphia Robotics Coalition founder, and School District of Philadelphia engineering teacher Michael Johnson discusses how Philadelphia public schools are using the competitive FIRST robotics programs to build STEM equity in our city. With the goal to inspire and prepare the next generation of STEM leaders in Philadelphia, the Coalition provides training, support, and resources for 180 robotics teams so that students in any neighborhood can access the learning, experiences, and networks surrounding them in the Philadelphia STEM community. Michael will also explain ways that GRASP students and researchers can get involved in this effort in a meaningful way across a continuum of time commitment levels.

Michael Johnson

Philadelphia Robotics Coalition

Michael Johnson is the head coach of the Central High School RoboLancers, comprising seven FIRST teams and 165 students this year, and has been teaching physics and engineering in the School District of Philadelphia since 2009. In 2016 he founded the nonprofit Philadelphia Robotics Coalition with his students, with the vision that every Philadelphia public school student could have access to a high quality robotics program in their school or community. He currently serves on the board of the Coalition and works part time on the staff as well. He holds a bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering from MIT and a master’s in Education from the University of Pennsylvania. Michael is a 2014 recipient of the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching and has over a decade of experience in nonprofit finance and leadership in Philadelphia.



January 18, 2023
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Event Category:


General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception (GRASP) Lab
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Levine 307
3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104 United States
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