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Material handling firm's scholarship helps future engineers

Program expanding this year


A view of a semiconductor's parts, with a red square visible in the center

Tempe-based material handling firm Automated Control Technologies set up a scholarship to benefit electrical and software engineering students at ASU. The scholarship started with two recipients last year and is growing to four this year. Photo courtesy Shutterstock

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August 17, 2022

Tim Carroll, owner and CEO of Automated Control Technologies, didn’t start his engineering career in a traditional manner; he was going to school to join the police force when he got a job drafting electrical diagrams.

“I had drafting experience and electrical experience from my high school days, and I needed a job because I lived up in the boondocks in Michigan,” Carroll says.

Following that serendipity, life then led him across the country to establish his Tempe-based material handling equipment company in 2002. Automated Control Technologies provides software, conveyor systems for sorting and moving packages and mail, control consoles and installation services. The company’s clients include government organizations such as the U.S. Postal Service.

Carroll says he values his employees and rewards those who have a strong work ethic. He believes in paying people fairly and providing a strong benefits package, so many staff have worked for him for 10 and even 25 years.

Helping ASU engineering students

Carroll’s desire to provide opportunities to those who work hard inspired him to start a scholarship fund.

He first thought of the idea a couple of years ago. After getting in touch with the right contacts, he decided to offer support for undergraduate electrical engineering and software engineering students in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University. Carroll focuses on students from these two majors because his company’s engineers are mostly in the electrical and software fields.

“I’m looking to do something to help, and obviously ASU has a good reputation,” he says. “Good school, good program, right in my backyard.”

The Automated Control Technologies Scholarship launched in the 2021–22 school year with two students and is growing to four students this coming school year.

Electrical engineering student Cameron Aquino was one of the first recipients, and he says it helped him maintain focus on his studies.

“I was able to keep my schooling as a priority in my life this past year, and that would not have been the case without being awarded the scholarship,” Aquino says. “I also was able to learn more about the man who showed me such great generosity, and getting to meet with him and his wife was a pleasure.”

While he would like to get a graduate degree in the future, his internship at Garmin has him excited to start working in industry after he graduates in December.

Scholarship recipient and software engineering major Jared Dyet spent years working in processing and packaging automation. He returned to school as the pandemic started with goals of enhancing his existing material handling skills with artificial intelligence.

“This scholarship was the first nice thing that went my way in a long time,” Dyet says. “It was really needed financially, but it was a huge morale boost in pursuing my education as well.”

Dyet believes that AI can advance quality control inspections for processing and packaging, and he looks forward to applying his new skills in the field.

Editor's note: Any undergraduate student studying electrical or software engineering who fills out a FAFSA application is automatically considered for the $5,000 scholarship.