OPEN Optics and Photonics Education News
Newsletter of the Optics and Photonics College Network
May 2020
LASER-TEC Collaboration with Power America: Laser Power Source System Using Wide Bandgap Semiconductors
LASER-TEC has received a supplemental award from the NSF ATE program to collaborate with Power America, a DOE National Advanced Manufacturing Institute, headquartered at North Carolina State University, Raleigh, in the design and development of a laser energizing source using wide bandgap semiconductor technology. The Center will also produce educational materials and curriculum for college instructors and students.

To learn more about Power America, visit

For more information about the Advanced Manufacturing Institutes, visit and
In the fall of 2019, LASER-TEC delegation visited several photonics companies in Germany – the country that holds the world’s leading position in laser and optics technologies for quite a long time. Germany is known for its very successful system of preparing its technical workforce through apprenticeships and close collaboration between education and industry. Its vocational education and training system, also known as the dual training system, is highly recognized worldwide due to its combination of theory and training embedded in a real-life work environment.

During this two-week visit to Germany, LASER-TEC delegation had the chance to spend a full day at the Trumpf Ditzingen headquartered facilities, near Stuttgart. Read more about this visit on our website .
International Day of Light 2020 Offers Resources for Student Outreach
The International Day of Light, celebrated each year on May 16, is a global initiative that provides an annual focal point for the continued appreciation of light and the role it plays in science, culture and art, education, sustainable development, and in fields as diverse as medicine, communications, and energy. Although many events and activities may no longer be able to take place as originally planned, many of those events have adopted online and virtual formats. 

Check out the  #SeeTheLight initiative , which is a worldwide message encouraging all to join the conversation and celebrate the importance of the science of light and light-based technologies in our lives. There are numerous graphically-rich and audience-specific materials—images, videos, animations, demonstrations, music, and many more. Among other resources, SPIE has even developed images that you can use as professional backgrounds for your future Zoom meetings.

All of these resources are great tools for our fall 2020 student outreach, which is likely to be done in a remote fashion.  
How Can LASER-TEC Help?
As we navigate uncharted waters together in education and workforce development programs during these unprecedented times, please let our team know what LASER-TEC can do to help you, your students, or your classes. Will a short-term professional development be helpful? If yes, which topics would you like to see offered? How about student outreach? Do you need any help with a list of vendors to stock your labs for your hybrid classes? Please share your thoughts by contacting Chrys Panayiotou at or by filling out this form:  
LASER-TEC Resources
Whether you are looking for support with your college program's outreach, curriculum design, academic-business partnerships, or student placement, LASER-TEC has resources for you. Visit the Resources tab on our website to browse textbooks, kits, laboratory manuals, and informational and outreach materials. The current collection is comprised of both LASER-TEC and OP-TEC materials. Don't forget to check this page often, as we will constantly upload additional resources.
Featured College: Hillsborough Community College - Tampa, FL
Hillsborough Community College offers Associate in Science degrees in Electronics Engineering Technology and Computer Engineering Technology. Our students find jobs at companies such as Raytheon, Honeywell, Crystal Movers, and Sensor Systems.
Electronics Engineering Technology AS

The electronics engineering technology AS degree program prepares you for an entry-level position as an electronics engineering technician who assists engineers in planning, research, development and design.

The coursework focuses on the skills needed for troubleshooting electronic equipment, performing operations, calculations, testing and reporting.

The State of Florida has established the AS degree in electronics engineering technology as a transfer degree to any Florida public university with a Bachelor's degree in electronics engineering technology or general engineering technology (electrical track) under the provisions of Rule 6A- 10.024.
Computer Engineering Technology AS

The computer engineering technology AS degree program prepares you for an entry-level position as a computer technician. The coursework focuses on the diagnosis and repair of hardware and software in micro, mini and mainframe computers. With minimal additional specialized training, you may become a field or in-house shop technician.
Skills of graduates
  • Use lab and test equipment; such as oscilloscopes, spectrum analyzers, multi-meters, and benchtop power supplies
  • Build electronic circuits on a breadboards and pc boards
  • Read schematic diagrams and interpret datasheets
  • Troubleshoot electronic circuits
  • Mesh and Nodal Analysis of electronic circuits in AC and DC
  • Digital Fundamentals: including Boolean algebra and latches/flip-flops
  • Linear Integrated Circuits: construct operational amplifier circuits
  • Communications Systems: construct AM and FM circuits, and use of Software Defined Radio
  • Photonics and Lasers: align optical systems, build laser drivers, and apply lasers in electronics
  • Solid State Devices: build circuits with bipolar junction transistors and MOSFETS
  • Microprocessors and Microcontrollers: design and program microcontroller circuits
  • Robotics: Program EPSON 6-axis robots using EPSON software and simulation
Contact Information
Name: Tracy Barnes
Telephone: (813) 253-7537
Address: 4001 W Tampa Bay Blvd, Tampa, FL 33614
How can I recruit from this college?
Come to our Dale Mabry Campus to present your employment opportunities to our students. 
OPCN Member Colleges

The Optics and Photonics College Network (OPCN) is an association of postsecondary photonics technician educators operated by LASER-TEC. To learn more about the OPCN and to view the list of member institutions, please visit
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OPEN is published by the LASER-TEC Center for Laser and Fiber Optics Education
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. DUE-1700352. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.