Employers Want Students Up-to-Date, Able to Hit the Ground Running
The School of Industrial and Engineering Technologies at Penn College offers students two programs in drafting and Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) technology: a two-year associate's degree in CAD Technology and a four-year bachelor's degree in CAD Product Design. The teaching and practice of new 3D design methodologies is the hallmark of their program.
"In their first year of studies, students are learning leading-edge 3D CAD techniques with Inventor software," says J.D. Mather, an assistant professor at Penn College. "We want students skilled in the same tools the experts are using, so the school-to-work transition is successful."
In 2006 Penn College became a pilot member of the Autodesk Student Engineering and Design Community. This online community, which has garnered more than 104,500 student and faculty members since September 2006, allows students in the fields of mechanical engineering, architecture, construction and civil engineering to download Autodesk software, including Inventor, for free*. Autodesk Inventor is the world's best-selling 3D mechanical design software and the foundation of Digital Prototyping.
"We are very proud that educational leaders like Penn College are taking advantage of the free software as well as the teaching and learning resources offered through our Student Engineering and Design Community site," said Alan Jacobs, senior manager of University Programs for Autodesk. "Autodesk is committed to helping educators foster the next generation of engineers, and helping ensure that their students have the support they need to become successful professionals."
Employers are taking note of how quickly Penn College students become productive and are crediting their extensive knowledge of Inventor, which allows them to hit the ground running without requiring time to train on software.
"With placement rates approaching 100 percent, it certainly appears we're fostering the skills employers demand," says Mather. "We recently received a request from an employer who had had so much success with a recent graduate of our program that they were back searching for more fresh talent."
Penn College has also focused on preparing students for the Autodesk Inventor Certified Expert examination: a thorough four-hour hands-on and written examination that enables highly experienced users to demonstrate proficiency and expertise in Inventor software.
"We're proud that two of our recent graduates are among only three students worldwide who have passed the Autodesk Inventor Certified Expert exam," says Mather. "This exam is usually taken after several years of professional experience."
A certified Autodesk Inventor expert himself, Mather has also been active in the beta development of Inventor. His list of accomplishments includes being one of ten winners of the Autodesk Inventor 10 Beta Challenge, one of eight winners of the Autodesk Inventor 11 Beta awards and winner of the Autodesk Inventor 11 Shape Description Contest with his Inventor model of a stapler. Most recently, he was a speaker at Autodesk University 2006 where his presentation was entitled, Becoming an Autodesk Inventor Professor in 90 Minutes.
The Autodesk Student Engineering and Design Community portal also provides students and educators with many resources such as tutorials, forums, and job postings. Any student or faculty with a valid education e-mail address is invited to participate in the Student Engineering and Design Community. For more information on this exciting new Web portal, visit: http://www.autodesk.student.com.
About Pennsylvania College of Technology
Pennsylvania College of Technology, an affiliate of The Pennsylvania State University, offers degrees that work. Small classes, faculty with real work experience, and access to computers and industry-standard equipment contribute to strong graduate placement rates, which exceed 95 percent overall and 100 percent in many majors. Penn College is a special mission affiliate of Penn State, committed to applied technology education. With more than 6,500 students enrolled in bachelor-degree, associate-degree, and certificate majors, Penn College has the second highest enrollment in the Penn State system. Business and industry connections are key ingredients in Penn College's success as a leader in Pennsylvania higher education and workforce development. The College's main campus is located in Williamsport, Pa.
About Autodesk Education
Autodesk is committed to supporting students and educators by providing access to powerful 2D and 3D design software, innovative programs and resources designed to inspire the next generation of professionals to experience their ideas before they're real. By advancing education in the key areas of science, technology, engineering, math and visual communications, Autodesk is helping students develop critical skills for future academic and career success. Autodesk supports schools and institutions of higher learning worldwide through substantial discounts, subscriptions, grant programs, training, curricula development and community resources. For more information about Autodesk education programs and solutions, visit http://www.autodesk.com/education.
Autodesk, Inc is the world leader in 2D and 3D design software for the manufacturing, building and construction, and media and entertainment markets. Since its introduction of AutoCAD software in 1982, Autodesk has developed the broadest portfolio of state-of-the-art digital prototyping solutions to help customers experience their ideas before they are real. Fortune 1000 companies rely on Autodesk for the tools to visualize, simulate and analyze real-world performance early in the design process to save time and money, enhance quality and foster innovation. For additional information about San Rafael, Calif.-based Autodesk, visit http://www.autodesk.com.
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