Foundations in Fusion: PrintCity engage with local school

Article by PrintCity Student Ambassadors: Bosco, Rhea and Simba

In collaboration with widening participation, we had the honour of hosting an inquisitive bunch of students from Alder Community High School. The students had a fun packed day at PrintCity starting with an introduction to its facilities, shown by PrintCity technician Emma Rothwell. The students got see various 3D printers from Ultimaker’s to the HP580 full colour printer. 

Peter Gough introduced the relationship between CAD and virtual reality (VR) by gaming characters to the students. The students found interest in it due to their lovely gaming characters being made by CAD. Pete highlighted the 3D animation and IKEA’s promotional items also made by CAD and rendering. The students and teachers were surprised by even IKEA’s promotional items that are not real. 

In todays exercise ,we had the students model a water bottle using Autodesk Fusion 360 from scratch. Most students had never used CAD before but they all managed to learn it by the end of the exercise within a 1½ hours. Not only modelling the water bottles, the students got to make it their own by customising them with their favourite brands. At the end we had water bottle designs from football teams to fashion icons. 

After lunch, the students started to learn to make a gear key ring. When Peter told the students that they can get the real 3D printed key ring, they were excited and surprised. Following Pete’s step by step and the morning practice, the students picked it up quickly. Some of the students did a great job on Fusion 360; they did not need any help to finish what Pete asked them to complete in Fusion 360. 

The most exciting part of the day for the students was the ‘Design Slam’. This is where they were asked to design an object that someone can drink from with a 30minute time limit. Once the challenge began, you could feel the excitement and competitiveness in the room. Students where buzzing with ideas and really let loose on their creativity. Everyone was taking part and constantly asking questions which was amazing! 

The students were brought in for a taste of a day at university also an introduction to Computer Aided Design and additive manufacturing to help students see a variety of options and opportunities that university can provide. The teachers said they were grateful for all of todays learnings as it was enriching, as it encouraged students to go to university. 

By Bosco, Rhea, Simba

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