Project Lead the Way

Since opening in the fall of 2013, GRAD Academy Memphis has offered an elective engineering track in partnership with Project Lead the Way (PLTW).

PLTW is a national program that develops curricula in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) fields for elementary, middle, and high schools.

Our PLTW curriculum satisfies the Tennessee state-level elective focus that is required to graduate high school.

We currently offer three courses from the PLTW curriculum.

  • Introduction to Engineering Design
    • Scholarsare introduced to engineering concepts, and as the year continues, they dig deeper into the engineering design process. Using math, science, and engineering standards, they will work alone and in groups on projects, such as completing 3-D designs.
  • Principals of Engineering
    • Scholars add on to what they learned in their Introduction to Engineering Design class and learn more about what goes into engineering. They study mechanisms, automation, and the strength of structures and materials. This class simultaneously develops scholars’ problem-solving and research skills while they learn collaboration,design process documentation, and presentation.
  • Computer Integrated Manufacturing 
    • This is the first year that GRAD Academy will offer this class. Scholars will learn about everything that goes into manufacturing the high-tech devices that we use in everyday life. They will also study product design, robotics, and automation.

We have two great facilitators with strong math and science backgrounds teaching these courses.

Audra Robinson graduated cum laude from Tougaloo College with a Bachelor of Science in Biology, and she taught Science for five years in Shelby County Schools. She is our first Computer Integrated Manufacturing facilitator, and she completed a robotics course summer of 2015 to help her teach our CIM course as well as lead the robotics team has been developed this year.

Rajiv Rohatgi is a graduate of Polytechnic University of NYU where he graduated with a B.S. and M.S. degree in Chemical Engineering.  He also holds a M. Ed in Secondary Education from Grand Canyon University.  He has taught General Science, Physical Science, and Chemistry.  He will be teaching PLTW I, Introduction to Engineering Design, and PLTW II, Principals of Engineering Design.