Dec 29, 2014 | By Alec

If you'd need any more convincing that 3D printing is here to stay, just go to any high school in your vicinity. Chances are that the local science teacher is dead-set on 3D printing, has a printer at home, and has been petitioning the board to include a course on 3D printing in the mandatory curriculum.

While it will likely take years before something like that becomes a reality, more and more experts, scientists and teachers have become convinced that 3D printing needs to taught to children as a basic skill, alongside computer science. They hope, and we have every reason to agree with them, that this will better prepare them for future careers. It's therefore hardly surprising that we are often hearing about new educational initiatives involving 3D printing; just last week, one of the most exclusive schools in India open its doors to 3D printing as well.

But it seems like the most innovative and forward-thinking educators can be found in China, where they have taken things to a whole new level. For in the Baiyun district of the city of Guangzhou in Southern China, the country's first 3D printing college has opened its doors: the Baiyun-Winbo 3D Printing Technology College.

This brand new school has been founded through a collaborative effort of the Guangzhou Baiyun Technician College of Business and Technology and Winbo Industries, one of China's giants in 3D printer manufacturing. Their specialized college has just opened its doors, and features five different sections all focused on this revolutionary manufacturing technology: a design center, a 3D printing center, a 3D printed products display center, a training center and study facilities.

Through this school, both parties are aiming to provide a training platform for teachers, students and 3D printing enthusiasts, while developing professional standards and an industry certification system. Meanwhile, it will be excellent place to keep an eye on pioneering research and development too.

As a spokesperson explained to Chinese media, '3D printing technology has become the most popular emerging industry', and they hope that their new college will serve as an important "wisdom campus". 'Students can innovate and design their own works. This joint effort will better serve the cultivation of students' ability and quality, and could change the traditional teaching mode.'

Their goals are thus above all long-term: 'Although China has been slower to pick up 3D printing technology than foreign countries, we have a bigger space here for the long-term development. At the same time, we believe it is important to cultivate and support our future 3D printing professionals from a young age. This way, our students can experience the forefront of science and technology, experience the charm of science and technology and train their practical skills for exploring culture exploration and innovation.'

This college has been under development since March of 2014, and has just opened its doors to its first students. Practically speaking, the location, offices and teaching space have been provided by Guangzhou Baiyun Technician College, while Wimbo has made an initial 20 3D printers available (consisting of 12 different models) for the students. That number is set to rise in the future, while new releases of Wimbo printers will also be provided to the students for testing and tinkering. Both institutions have also provided the means for an engineer and a professional teacher to work at the college.

It will be very interesting where this development will lead to and how long it will take for other technical schools to follow this precedent. Perhaps the first generation of 3D printing professionals is just around the corner?


Posted in 3D Printing Applications


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alvaro wrote at 12/29/2014 4:54:52 PM:

A revolution is coming !

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