A great way to expand the use of Additive Manufacturing (AM) technology, intrigue students into engineering fields, and start to tackle the issues involving jobs and manufacturing in this country is for AM vendors to work with teachers and schools.
Rapidtech.org is a group that sponsors workshops on rapid prototyping and additive manufacturing for anyone to attend. This educational entity is part of the Saddleback College and is partially funded by the National Science Foundation. It assists businesses, educational institutions, entrepreneurs and community-based organizations in developing new products and designs using innovative rapid prototyping technologies, additive manufacturing, and reverse engineering. Recently, the organization held a workshop for teachers to inform them of this technology and help them communicate this information to students. Z Corporation, Stratasys, NextEngine, Rapidform, and SolidWorks were among the participants in the workshop.
On August 30, 2011, Z Corporation announced the launch of “EngineeringZONE™,” an initiative that invites high school classes to visit the company monthly for an afternoon to experience some of the latest 3D printing and 3D laser scanning technology.
Students in the EngineeringZONE program will try their hand at some introductory computer-aided design (CAD) software and will make their own 3D printed models. Interested high schools should contact Z Corporation for more details.
At the press event announcing this action, Congressman Tierney, New England Member on the House Education and Workforce Committee, applauded Z Corporation’s efforts.
Said, Scott Harmon, vice president of business development, Z Corporation, “We’re thrilled to open our doors to curious students because this is where the magic happens, where you can see a design on a computer screen turn into a physical object before your eyes. In addition to the sizzle, 3D printing brings together all of the disciplines – science, technology, engineering and mathematics – that our students so desperately need to master now and in the future. We’re honored that Congressman Tierney, was able join us on this important initiative.”