The saying goes that necessity is the mother of invention. For Tim Heffernan, founder of the Pennsylvania Rural Robotics Initiative and the Innovation Institute for Tomorrow, the necessity of adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic proved to be just that.

In 2020, the challenge of extending robotics and mathematics lessons to high school students during the pandemic led Heffernan and partners at the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University to create an eight-part instructional mini-series called “Robot Doctor”.

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FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — With the death toll from Hurricane Ian rising and hundreds of thousands of people without power in Florida and the Carolinas, U.S. officials vowed Sunday to unleash a massive amount of federal disaster aid as crews scrambled to rescue people stranded by the storm.

CLARION — As the nine-day Autumn Leaf Festival wrapped up Sunday after it had its share of unsettled weather, Clarion Area Chamber of Business & Industry Executive Director Tracy Becker reflected on how weather “is always a factor” in the festival’s success.

Franklin Area School District is hoping to cut costs as well as paper with a new idea presented at this week’s school board operations committee meeting — The Knights Mill & Print Shoppe.

The bridge over Halls Run Creek on Meadow Church Road in Cranberry Township has been closed because the bridge superstructure has deficiencies, according to the township's website.

PUNTA GORDA, Fla. (AP) — Rescue crews piloted boats and waded through inundated streets Thursday to save thousands of Floridians trapped amid flooded homes and shattered buildings left by Hurricane Ian, which crossed into the Atlantic Ocean and churned toward South Carolina.

CLARION — The Clarion Borough Police Department is seeking a grant to fund security and safety improvements along Main Street, which include camera surveillance between Fourth and Eighth avenues in the proposed project.

Franklin School Board members voted at their meeting this week to join the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision program that will provide free breakfasts and lunches each school day during this school year.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Hurricane Ian, one of the most powerful storms ever recorded in the U.S., swamped southwest Florida on Wednesday, turning streets into rivers, knocking out power to 2 million people and threatening catastrophic damage further inland.

In about a month, the Cranberry Mall will go up for bid through an Irvine, California-based commercial real estate exchange, but nothing is expected to change as far as the property’s status as a mall.

Oil City School Board members approved contracts Monday for two school resource officers and a social worker while also accepting the retirement of longtime school district security director John McNerney.

Several security upgrades have been implemented recently in Franklin School District, according to a presentation at Monday’s Franklin School Board meeting from student support services director Denise Phipps and district principals.

CLARION — Clarion County Director of Elections Cindy Callihan is expected to officially announce her retirement today after nearly 40 years with the county. Her retirement is effective Oct. 1, but she will remain as a part-time employee until after the 2022 election.

The announcement that the California Air Resources Board will ban the sale of gas-powered cars entirely by 2035 created a wide range of responses from other states, including Pennsylvania, in that they intend to follow California’s lead.

About 30 Cranberry Township residents registered their opposition to the proposed Cypress Creek Renewables solar farm — on property between Bucktail Road and Cranberry-Rockland Road — during a conditional use hearing on Thursday at the municipal building.

CLARION — This year’s Autumn Leaf Festival will include a children’s carnival as the Clarion Area Chamber of Business and Industry has reached a last-minute agreement with Punxsutawney-based “Mike’s Magical Entertainment.”