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Andrea J. Burney, APR

Director of  Public Relations



3D Printing class

Jerry Franklin, Director of Manufacturing and Technical Services, loads a tray into the Stratasys ® 3D printer at the Regional Center for Advanced Technology and Training (RCATT). Students in the non-credit 3D printing class have the opportunity to use the machine to make parts out of molten plastic.

DANVILLE, VA,  April 20, 2015 – A non-credit class at Danville Community College this spring will expose students to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) activities. “Making Things with 3D Printing? (CADD 1010-90, #30141) will meet on Tuesdays, from April 28 through May 19, 6:30-9:30 p.m. in the computer lab at the Regional Center for Advanced Technology and Training (RCATT). Steve Bradford is the course instructor.

“If you’re interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, this has elements of all of those in it. It will give you practical applications of STEM,? said Jerry Franklin, Director of Manufacturing and Technical Services. The class will show students how to make things using the latest technology, giving them the practical knowledge to replace broken parts around the house along with foundational knowledge they could use in a future career in a STEM field.

Knowing basic computer functions and having a curiosity about the way parts are made will be helpful to students taking the class. The class will provide an introduction to the 3D Computer Assisted Design Program, Solid Works. After drawing a part, students will have the opportunity to make that part by loading it onto a Stratasys® 3D printer. The printer works by drawing the shape in molten plastic, stacking 2-dimensional shapes one on top of each other.

“If you’ve got an idea for a part around the house that you would like to replace, this is the kind of thing that will allow you to make things for yourself. This is the latest innovation in making things,? Franklin said. For example, a student with a broken slide on a dresser drawer in their home can make a replacement slide for that drawer in the 3D printing class. Any small part (8 x 8 x 10-inch envelope) you can draw, can be made with the 3D printer.

For students interested in a career in STEM, the future is bright, and as Franklin says, the 3D printing class is a good place to start. “This is the height of consumer engineering science technology. Scientists are doing groundbreaking research on printing biological cells to make body parts,? Franklin says. “RCATT at DCC is all about training the workforce for the jobs of the future.?

The cost of the 3D Printing class is $160. For more information, contact Jerry Franklin at 434.797.8573 or click here.

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