ProtoCAM recently hosted and provided a tour of our facility to a group of students from Lehigh University’s “Product Design II” course. This marks ProtoCAM’s third year working with students at Lehigh.
Ed Graham, ProtoCAM’s Engineering Manager, gave the grand tour of the facility. Students learned about the different print styles and printers available at ProtoCAM, while Graham and the course’s instructor, Professor Wes Heiss, placed special emphasis on the post-processing aspect of additive manufacturing, which is the means through which 3D-printed parts become presentation-worthy.
The design course, according to the university website, is intended to “expose students to client-based projects and issues of branding relevant to the product designer. Special emphasis will be given to functionality from a user-centered perspective.” The course is open to students from several different majors; students in chemical engineering, architecture, and mechanical engineering majors are all enrolled in the course this semester.
The students’ final project, which involves a presentation before a panel of judges, is to design and create a shoe for a 4-5 year old. For the project, the students met with preschool/kindergarten students and teachers at “A Child’s Choice” Montessori School in Bethlehem to get an idea of what kinds of details that would go into creating the perfect shoe for this age group. In past years, students in “Project Design II” have designed other kinds of shoes, including high heels. When their designs are complete, students will upload their 3D printable files to Thingiverse, a website in which users can share their designs for free with the public.
Graham and Dale Bond, ProtoCAM’s Marketing Coordinator, will serve on the panel of judges for the students’ final project. The winning design, as chosen by the panel, will be professionally printed and finished as a pair by ProtoCAM; one shoe will be presented to the designer, and one shoe will remain on display at ProtoCAM.