As 3D printing technology continues to advance, many people are trying to play catch-up. Everyone agrees that education is vitally important, starting as early as possible, and many schools are rising to the challenge, though not all of them have the resources to implement the technological education that all children so badly need. Many adults, meanwhile, are finding that 3D printing is a necessary skill for the workplace but, not having been raised on the technology, they may feel a bit lost. There are a lot of educational resources available, but not everyone knows where to look or how to start. Beginning to learn or teach 3D printing can be an overwhelming-seeming task, so America Makes wants to make it easier.
InnoCentive is a platform that crowdsources ideas. Challenges are posted by “seekers,” who offer rewards for solutions and content from the community. America Makes is using the platform to start building an educational repository of 3D printing curricula and resources. Educators and industry professionals who have already developed curricula are invited to submit them to the Innovation Sprint: Additive Manufacturing Curricula Challenge.
The challenge welcomes content for any age or education level, from K-12 to college, technical or vocational school, or on-the-job training. Submissions should include course content and a written description, and the deadline is July 23rd.
“At America Makes, the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute, we’ve learned that one of the biggest opportunities to support the acceleration and adoption of 3D printing technology is providing resources, materials and training to build skills through workforce and education,” states America Makes. “There are a lot of resources that currently exist, but not everyone knows where to find them…
“Educators often have to recreate the wheel in developing…courses because they don’t have access to where current content lives. America Makes is not seeking new content developed for this Challenge but rather submission of existing content currently used for educating students or employees about AM. Content may be an entire stand-alone course, a short (six course-hour minimum) AM module within a longer course, or even content integrated within other course content.”
If your content is chosen for inclusion in the repository, you’ll receive a one-year Silver Level Membership in America Makes, a $15,000 value. A Silver Level Membership grants the following:
- Access to new R&D funding through networking and resources
- A platform to collaborate with industry and peers
- Access to member-only data
- Access to America Makes intellectual property
- The chance to lead project teams in America Makes project calls
- Participation in America Makes directed project calls
- Coordinated access to the additive manufacturing supply chain
- PDF version of the Wohlers Report
- Government contract navigation assistance
- Training discount
- Technical presentations and workshops
- Poster session participation
- Platform to socialize research results
- Chance to serve on America Makes’ advisory committee and working groups
- Attendance at semi-annual members-only program management reviews
- Chance to sponsor an internship
As you can see, there’s a lot to be gained from a membership, and America Makes expects to award several of them over the course of this challenge. Current America Makes members are welcome to submit curricula as well; if chosen, they will be rewarded with credit toward future membership fees. Members will also have access to all other accepted curricula, and will not be required to transfer any intellectual property rights upon acceptance. You can learn more about the Innovation Sprint: Additive Manufacturing Curricula Challenge here. Discuss in the America Makes forum at 3DPB.com.
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