Michigan-based advanced manufacturing technology industry organization SME has announced the winners of their 2016 SkillsUSA student Additive Manufacturing Competition. This was the second year that SME held their additive manufacturing contest, and they were joined by their co-sponsor 3D printing technology company Stratasys in presenting the winning teams with prizes and medals. This was the second year that SME brought the event to the 52nd annual SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference. This year the conference was held in Louisville, Kentucky from June 21st to the 23rd. The student teams were evaluated based on their technical knowledge and skill at using additive manufacturing/3D printing technology.
3D printing is rapidly becoming one of the most desirable and useful skills for students who will soon be new to the labor force to have. Companies in industries as diverse as construction, industrial manufacturing and product design are looking for a workforce that is comfortable and familiar with additive manufacturing/3D printing. SME brought their additive manufacturing contest to SkillsUSA to attract students and young people to the emerging 3D printing industry and to encourage them to learn new and relevant skills. The competition was designed to help participants gain a greater knowledge of 3D printing applications and how to apply that knowledge to product development and problem solving.
By partnering with Stratasys, the participating students were given invaluable hands-on experience with the latest 3D printing technology and 3D software. This year a total of 22 student teams participated in the SkillsUSA Additive Manufacturing Competition. By the end of the conference 6 teams were awarded gold, silver and bronze medals for showcasing knowledge and experience with the use of digital and additive manufacturing technology and processes. The winners received prizes that ranged from SME Education Foundation scholarships to a MakerBot Mini 3D printer, a 3D mouse, and a SolidWorks 3D CAD software package.
“The winners of this year’s Additive Manufacturing competition represent some of the best and brightest at their schools. Additive manufacturing/3D printing is growing rapidly, and the demand for talent in this field continues to outpace the availability of the workforce. Capturing the attention of high school students is key to securing a skilled workforce,” said the CEO of SME, Jeff Krause.
Gold, silver and bronze medals were awarded for both high school teams and college teams. The Gold Medal winning team for the high school aged students were Christopher Dagher and Justin Heck from the Payette River Technical Academy in Emmett, Idaho. The Silver Medal winners were Tommy Tran and Adolfo Diaz from Hastings High School in Hastings, Nebraska. And the Bronze Medal was awarded to Corey Daly and Joao Vitor Garcia from Assabet Valley Regional Tech High School in Marlborough, Massachusetts.
The Gold Medal winning team for the college aged students were Kevin L Barger and Michael T McMahon from Sheridan College-Sheridan in Sheridan, Wyoming. The Silver Medal winners were Collin Goddes and Kyle Brakke from Calhoun Community College in Decatur, Alabama. And the Bronze Medal was awarded to John Welborn and Joshua Branch from Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina.
The SkillsUSA Additive Manufacturing competition included a written knowledge exam as well as two separate design challenges developed to test each student’s general understanding of additive manufacturing technology. All of the participating teams were asked to design a trading pin and a catapult that would need to be 3D printed on-site during the conference. The students were evaluated on how closely they followed the contest specifications, including 3D print time, the size of the printed item, and the amount of material used. The teams also participated in a challenge to test the accuracy and distance of their catapult designs. The final results of their project, their designs and their engineering notebooks were all evaluated by the panel of expert judges, who selected the winners. Discuss further in the SME Winners Receive Scholarships, 3D Printers, More forum over at 3DPB.com.