Disney brings STEM and storytelling together to inspire kids and families at this year’s Otronicon event

Filed in: Making a Difference

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Jan. 17, 2020 – Virtual-reality views of hotel rooms and nighttime spectacular science are just a few of the ways Disney engineers showcased our parks and resorts’ storytelling technology to inspire young minds at this year’s Otronicon event at the Orlando Science Center.

Kids visiting the event had the opportunity to talk to Disney engineers about how they bring magic and mechanics together in their work. Earth-minded attendees could interact with a moving tree about recyclable items or discover how animal scientists use technology to study some of the resident creatures at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park. Guests could also dive into the world of virtual reality to “visit” Disney resort rooms or build and view their own nighttime spectacular.

“Disney Engineers at Walt Disney World Resort have inspired kids to dream big through our founding principles of creativity, innovation and storytelling for nearly 50 years,” said Rachel Hutter, senior vice president of International Facilities and Operations Services, Worldwide Safety & Health, and Engineering at The Walt Disney Company. “Having fun exploring the technologies behind the experiences at Disney Parks during this year’s Otronicon event will hopefully spark the imagination of future visionaries.”

Every year, the Otronicon event attracts thousands of children, families and technology enthusiasts from throughout Central Florida to the Orlando Science Center with the goal of shining a spotlight on current achievements and future possibilities in science-related fields.

“Through events like Otronicon, Orlando Science Center is able to continue igniting kids’ passion for STEM,” said JoAnn Newman, president and CEO of Orlando Science Center. “By collaborating with industry leaders across our community, including Disney, we are able to help further our mission to inspire science learning for life and inspire the next generation of Central Florida’s scientists, engineers, doctors and other technical professionals.”

Otronicon is one of many ways Walt Disney World Resort supports STEM-based learning in the community, including a STEM-focused career panel with Boys & Girls Clubs students, supporting early learning programs and implementing a Central Florida FIRST Robotics team consisting of 30 local high schoolers. For nearly a decade, Walt Disney World Cast Members have been inspiring future STEM professionals at Otronicon. In connection with this year’s event, Cast Members logged hundreds of hours volunteering to prepare for, design and showcase interactive technologies.