Northampton College students can do their part to help some of the most vulnerable in society with 3D printing technology.
The college has recently installed eight state-of-the-art 3D printers, giving students the chance to experiment with the equipment to create component parts or designs for projects they are working on.
The printers are housed in the college’s specialist engineering department but can be used by students on any course, in exchange for a donation to be given to Re:Store Northampton as part of a commitment to help the town centre charity’s food bank scheme.
Engineering lecturer Sam Robinson said: “It means staff or students can have their 3D printing done in exchange for a packet of pasta or a tin of soup. We want it to help not just people inside the college but outside in the local community as well. It feels good to be doing something that benefits other people in some way. Obviously 3D printers can be used by engineering students for structural components to complete specific tasks and functions but they are also fantastic for creativity as well. I use mine at home for anything from making flower pots to book ends. The possibilities are pretty much endless and it’s absolutely the way the manufacturing industry is going so giving our students exposure to the technology and getting them familiar with using it as part of their studies is of huge benefit.”
Northampton College is working closely with multiple industry partners to continually refine its offering in line with the skills needs of local employers, ensuring students are ready to hit the ground running in paid employment when they complete their course.
A major investment into engineering at Booth Lane has seen the arrival of 80 new computers, with other equipment due to be unveiled in the coming months.
Re:Store Northampton provides people with emotional and practical support at the points of crisis, and empowers them to address the underlying causes of poverty. Projects range from emergency provisions of food and necessities for those in economic hardship, to longer term support work and community activities.
Find out more about Northampton College at northamptoncollege.ac.uk.
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