Last year GE Additive launched a unique program called the GE Additive Education Program, where it is investing $10 million over five years in educational programs to deliver 3D printing packages to primary and secondary schools and metal 3D printers to colleges and universities across the globe.
In its first year in 2017, GE delivered direct metal laser melting (DMLM) 3D printers to eight colleges and universities. More than 400 K-12 schools each received two Polar Cloud-enabled 3D printers and STEM curriculum.
While last year’s program impacted the lives of around 180,000 students across the world, GE Additive Education Program’s (AEP) 2018 cycle is set to impact more than 400,000 K-12 students in 30 countries.
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The 3D printing package will be awarded to 600 primary and secondary schools in 30 countries. Each 3D printing package includes hardware, software, and science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics (STEAM) curriculum and will be delivered by 30 September 2018.
According to Jason Oliver, VP & CEO of GE Additive. “We are excited to continue the program in 2018 and give students across all grades exposure to additive manufacturing. This will help promote interest in STEM and create a pipeline of qualified engineers and technicians to accelerate the adoption of additive manufacturing.”
Australia, one of the top five countries with the most package recipients this year, will receive the 3D printing packages in 103 schools.
One such recipient school, North Sydney Demonstration School, recently hosted an event to make the announcement. At the event, President and CEO of GE APAC, Wouter Van Wersch said, “Additive manufacturing will be one of the biggest disruptors in the future of the industry, and Australia has a huge opportunity to lead in this globally.”
He continued, “Through our Additive Education Program, GE aims to help build a strong pipeline of additive manufacturing skills – starting from the classroom – so that the next generation is on the front foot to take on future manufacturing opportunities.”
Speaking about the program, GE Australia’s CEO, Max York noted that, “Australia has always been early adopters of technology and the fact that the highest number of schools awarded in this program, after the United States, are Australian shows that we are punching above our weight in this rapidly growing industry.”
He added, “I’m thrilled that through this program, approximately 30,000 students in Australia will now have access to 3D-printing technology and gain skills from our global education curriculum.”
The curriculum for GE’s Additive Education Program was created by Adelaide-based startup Makers Empire and STEAMtrax
According to Jon Soong, CEO of Makers Empire, “We are passionate about empowering students and teachers with the power of 3D printing to develop design thinking and 21st-century learning skills. The GE Additive Education Program benefits schools by providing exposure to 3D printing and encouraging students to incorporate the technology into a broader problem-solving approach.”
GE is making a significant impact by helping students learn about the 3D printing technology. GE is influencing the lives of more than 400,000 students this year and even more kids in the next three years.
Colleges and universities that will be awarded a metal additive manufacturing system as part of the AEP will be announced later this month.
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