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Engineering Students Participate in National Conference

February 14, 2020

Five engineering students from Dripping Springs High School had the unique experience to attend the international 3DEXPERIENCE® World 2020 Conference to display and demonstrate skills and designs they have used in their learning experiences at DSHS. At this conference, which was held Feb. 9-12 in Nashville, Tenn., designers, engineers, entrepreneurs and business leaders had opportunities to work with innovative technology powering “an Industry Renaissance.”

DSHS seniors Gavin Collins, Bryce and Jason Fitzpatrick, Anna McMillon, and Brandon Richard were part of the Education Zone (“EDU ZONE”) product showcase area at the conference. The showcase area, which was visited by about 5,000 conference-goers, was specifically devoted to students and their great designs using the software program SOLIDWORKS. Several college students participated in the showcase, but Dripping Springs was the only high school invited to participate. DSHS students displayed the remote-controlled vehicle used in Land Rover 4x4 in Schools competitive events, as well as the miniature F1 car they have used in F1 in Schools competitions. The school offers a certification in SOLIDWORKS.

While at the conference, Collins and Engineering teacher Jad Jadeja were invited to participate in a live-streamed interview coordinated by SOLIDWORKS regarding experiences offered to students. (It can be viewed on YouTube starting at the 13:20 mark.)

“Attending the 3DEXPERIENCE World 2020 during our senior year of high school was a great opportunity to gain exposure to the real-life applications of what we are learning in the classroom,” said Collins.

“For students want to go into STEM-related careers, it gave us valuable insight on new technologies, applications, and most importantly, industry leaders who could potentially be employers, clients, or business partners one day,” added McMillon.

Collins also was featured recently in “Dripping Springs Century News” in an article about his internship applying the engineering skills and certifications he has attained at DSHS. Collins interns at KCW Fabtech, where his knowledge of the software program SOLIDWORKS has proven helpful.

Jadeja and DSHS Principal Angela Gamez accompanied the students to the conference; Jadeja also sponsors the teams that compete in engineering-type competitions like the 4x4 and F1 in Schools. “To be on an international stage is a validation that the students are taking theory and applying it to real-world applications,” said Jadeja. “It provides excellent opportunities to discover colleges and research potential employers and inspires the students to take their work to the next level.”