In his effort to see 3D printing span the globe–including those areas that have experienced great oppression, poverty, and instability due to political unrest–Ki Chong Tran walks the walk–and in fact, journeyed all the way to Cambodia to see this incredible new technology make its way into the highly populated Southeast Asian country.
“Nearly 2 years ago, I sold nearly everything I owned and moved to Cambodia to start the first 3D printing business here,” Ki Chong Tran told 3DPrint.com. “I am happy to say that today we are still alive and going strong.”
The Think Global Make Local team created by Tran’s ARC Hub PNH, in continuing to move forward, has now just launched their crowdfunding campaign at Start Some Good, in hopes to raise $40K by the end of month for their comprehensive 3D design and 3D printing curriculum meant for business.
Their goal is very simple: to enhance the world economy by helping still developing countries like Cambodia become players in manufacturing–and lots of it–just like the US, Japan, and China. While that is a lofty ambition indeed, Think Global is embarking on a program to see that right now Cambodians are to able to break into the business of making for other Cambodians–reversing the trend there for so many products to be imported from overseas.
Seeking to add greater value to the country, more jobs, and inspiring creativity, innovation, and invention, the Think Global Make Local team aspires to begin this momentum with free 3D printing product development courses for Cambodians, with instructions from world-class teachers hailing from the US, Australia, and the UK. The courses will include content regarding industrial design, 3D printing, 3D design, electronics, and engineering. The idea is to make resources free to Cambodians in kickstarting 3D printing and fabricating in their country.
“Specifically, we want to take the quality resources, knowledge, and skills that we have collected within our team at ARC Hub PNH and distribute them to local Cambodians so they can create great products for their own communities,” states the team on their crowdfunding page.
The team has already, as they point out, in themselves, created the first self-sustainable 3D printing business in Cambodia with ARC Hub PNH, which we first covered back in November. Now they want to create a positive cycle of learning, creating, and job creation within the country for others. They have worked with local schools, and one in particular where the kids made 3D printed items with commerce in mind, and then all went out and actually sold what they had fabricated.
“We have bootstrapped our efforts for nearly two years and have been able to build the 3D printing market in Cambodia when none existed before,” states the team. “ARC Hub PNH offers locals access to 3D printing and 3D design services as well as training and education on how to use this powerful new technology.”
“We know what works, what doesn’t, and what we need to do next.”
Their curriculum offers comprehensive coverage of the design and 3D printing process in both guided and self-guided projects. By the end of the first four-week segment, students created their own design with 3D printed components, incorporating both electrical and mechanical design.
Within the second, self-directed two weeks, students are responsible for making a formal prototype for their product, preparing it as though it were a true marketing launch. Those participating gain strong design skills as well as learning about the organizational process involved from concept to actual fabrication.
Classes are minimized so that teachers are able to focus intensely on educating the small groups, who need no prerequisite education, income, or language. The only restriction is that each class is made up of fifty percent male students, and fifty percent female. The goal, ultimately, is to turn out ‘graduates’ who will then go on to continue producing innovations they can build their businesses upon. The entire course curriculum can be viewed online.
If you have 3D printing requirements that need to be met this is a great campaign to support, as for as little as $100, you receive vouchers on 3D printed items being made through ARC Hub PNH. Very importantly, you can also choose to be a sponsor, beginning at $500 and working up to $1,000 which also buys you the privilege of having the products made in the course pitched to you first. If you want to contribute more, and in more tangible form, at the $2,000 to $2,500 range, the team welcomes you to donate specific 3D printers to Cambodian schools.
Is this a campaign that you are interested in contributing to? Do you know of any similar programs going on? Discuss in the Think Global Make Local forum thread over at 3DPB.com.