A tale of two cities

Article written by student ambassadors: Callum Baxter, Swetha Subramanian, Brijesh Gurav and Oliver Sargeant

We had the pleasure of entertaining a curious group of Salford City Academy pupils in conjunction with the MMU wideing participation programme. The day at PrintCity was jam-packed with activities for the pupils and began with a tour of the facility. The pupils got to witness a variety of 3D printers, including the HP580 full-colour printer and Ultimaker models.

All perfect likenesses:

Peter Gough used video game characters to explain to the pupils how CAD and video games are related. Because CAD was used to create their wonderful video game characters, the pupils were interested in it. Pete emphasised on real world examples, like IKEA advertising products and video game models, both of which were produced using CAD and rendering. The rendered promotional products from IKEA startled the children and teachers.

In today’s activity, we had the pupils design a water bottle from scratch in Autodesk Fusion 360. Although the pupils had never used CAD before, by the end of the exercise, they had all mastered it. The pupils got to personalise their water bottles by modelling them and customised them by adding decals of their favourite logos and colours.

The pupils began learning how to create a gear key ring after lunch. Later, they were startled and delighted when Peter informed them that they could actually get a 3D-printed key ring. The pupils rapidly mastered it by following Pete’s step-by-step instructions and the morning practice. Some of them performed exceptionally well on Fusion 360, finishing the tasks Pete assigned to them without the need for assistance.

For the pupils, the day’s “Design Slam” was the most interesting activity. At this point, they were instructed to create a drinking vessel with a 30-minute time limit. From the moment the challenge started, you could sense the tension and rivalry in the room. Pupils truly let loose with their imagination and were brimming with ideas. It was fantastic how everyone participated and were always asking questions! It was especially difficult for the student ambassadors to pick the winning designs as there was a great showcase of creativity.

Our two winners for today with Mr Owen from Salford City Academy. Well done!

To help pupils understand the range of opportunities and advantages that a university may offer, the students were brought in for a taster day on campus as well as an introduction to computer aided design and additive manufacturing at Print City. The teachers expressed their gratitude for all of today’s lessons, calling them enriching and motivating students to pursue higher education.

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