tv screen with two women panelists

2020 Virtual Florida Simulation Summit: Three Things You Need to Know


The annual Florida Simulation Summit, hosted by Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings, in partnership with the National Center for Simulation and the Orlando Economic Partnership, was held on Oct. 28, 2020. Now in its sixth year, this was the first year the Summit was held virtually.

The Summit featured a variety of speakers and panels who represented the local, national, and international Modeling, Simulation & Training (MS&T) industry. The event focused on the intersection of simulation and collaborative problem solving, and how advancements in the industry can help us tackle today’s challenges. If you missed it, here are three key takeaways from the Florida Simulation Summit:

  1. Innovating Innovation: COVID-19 has changed the traditional concept of work-life balance, shifting it to focus more on a life-work balance. As businesses continue to develop products and services during this new normal, more emphasis has to be placed on changing the process of how we innovate – not falling back on standard, process-oriented ways of innovation. Now, businesses have to be more fluid when thinking about the future.
  2. Multi-sector Integration: Central Florida is the epicenter for MS&T. This sector directly employs more than 27,000 Floridians in skilled, high-wage jobs. Simulation crosses over to many other key industries in Central Florida, including the armed services, hospitality, entertainment, higher education, manufacturing and more.
  3. Expand Education: The simulation industry must continue to study how virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) affects social interaction. Education can showcase all the possibilities of this technology and how it can make lasting and impactful changes in society – beyond headsets. VR/AR is not a one-size-fits-all type of technology.

During the virtual event, the National Center for Simulation also recognized Central Florida educators for their leadership in MS&T/STEM education, and workforce development. This year’s honorees include:

Hagerty High School
Robert Frasca – Principal
Jonah Harder – Teacher

Brandon Hanshaw – Principal
Clayton Donnan – Teacher

Timber Creek High School
Kelly Paduano – Principal
Jon Frankos – Teacher

East River High School
Nikki Campbell – Principal
Annette Love – Teacher

Tohopekaliga High School
David Phelps – Principal
Lynn VanderZyl – Teacher

Orange Technical College
Alex Heidelberg – Director
Trey Atwood – Instructor
Jonathan Curras – Instructor

Seminole State College
Lenny Portelli – Dean
William Gaught – Program Manager

Watch the full Summit.

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