Construct3D 2020 Headed to Rice University

Academic 3D printing conference connects hundreds of educators, students and experts to accelerate the adoption and exploration of digital fabrication in education.

Academic 3D printing conference connects hundreds of educators, students and experts to accelerate the adoption and exploration of digital fabrication in education.

Construct3D 2020, a national academic 3D printing and digital fabrication conference and expo, is taking place at Rice University, February 13-16, 2020. The annual vendor-agnostic event, hosted this year by Rice University Associate Teaching Professor Matthew Wettergreen and the Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen, brings together hundreds of faculty, staff and students from informal, K-12 and higher education settings to exchange ideas, develop skills and influence the direction of 3D printing in education. 

“The application of visualization, modeling and 3D printing is critical for advancing the fields of medicine, energy and space,” says Matthew Wettergreen, co-organizer from Rice University. “Houston is the home for these industries as the energy capital, the world's largest medical center, and the birthplace of the space program.

“We are thrilled to convene Construct3D at Rice University to discuss the intersection of these industries and the use of 3D printing in educational contexts,” adds Wettergreen. “We want attendees and speakers to walk away from the conference understanding the use of these techniques across a broad spectrum of use cases and support increased usage in their own spheres.”

The conference, co-founded by Ultimaker's Matt Griffin and Lizabeth Arum (now at nTopology) and Duke University'sChip Bobbert, and sponsored by founding sponsors Ultimaker, Shopbot, Autodesk, and founding member Duke University, focuses on academic use of 3D printing, best practices, and professional development. Attendees have access to a wide variety of workshops, panels, and presentations across critical tracks, including healthcare and medical, art and entertainment, math, aerospace, STEM, innovation and more. 

“We are very excited to be in Houston for year three and we plan to take advantage of all Houston has to offer educators interested in STEM,” says Co-Founder Chip Bobbert, Duke University. “From pillars of industry from space, energy, and health, to a rich academic community at Rice University, to a thriving art and art institutional ecosystem, we couldn't be happier with the site chosen for the 2019-2020 school year.”

The lineup of keynotes speakers at Construct3D 2020 includes: 

  • Brian McLean—LAIKA's director of Rapid Prototype is a visual effects Oscar nominee (“Kubo and the Two Strings”) and recipient of the Academy's Scientific and Engineering award for pioneering 3D printing in animation. This year, LAIKA's feature, “Missing Link,” is a Golden Globe winner and Oscar nominee. 
  • Jordan Miller—assistant professor of Bioengineering and founder, Advanced Manufacturing Research Institute (AMRI), Houston at Rice University. His primary research interests combine synthetic chemistry, 3D printing, microfabrication and molecular imaging to direct cultured human cells to form more complex organizations of living vessels and tissues for research in regenerative medicine. 
  • Gary Stager—Journalist, teacher educator, consultant, professor, software developer, publisher, school administrator and co-author of “Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom.” 
  • Melodie Yashar—Design architect, researcher and co-founder of Space Exploration Architecture (SEArch+), a group building upon a 10-year portfolio of academic space research and practice developing human-supporting concepts for space exploration. In 2015, SEArch+ was awarded the top prize in NASA's Centennial Challenge for a 3D-Printed Habitat for the proposal “Mars Ice House.” 
  • Sarah Flora—Program director of Radiology's 3D Lab at Geisinger, a 14+ hospital system spanning across Pennsylvania and New Jersey. In her role, Sarah leads an elite group of MRI and CT technologists in the processing of on-screen medical reconstructions. Additionally, she segments, designs, and 3D prints patient-specific medical models to aid in pre-surgical planning, patient and learner education, surgical simulation, and surgical aid tools.

“Construct3D is a unique event that gets bigger and better every year. Not only does it provide a platform for educators, students and academic institutions to share their latest research and first-hand knowledge, but it encourages real action, hands-on experiences and collaboration to help drive the industry forward,” says Matt Griffin, conference co-founder, co-chair and director of Community at Ultimaker North America. 

Additional featured presenters at Construct3D 2020 include Jessica Rosenkrantz and Jesse Louis-Rosenberg, founders of Nervous System; Dr. Bon Ku from Jefferson University; and Make Community's Dale Dougherty. The conference will also host the DigiFabCon Digital Badging workshop, an art exhibit, a Space Medicine Design Charrette, and a poster competition where students can compete for cash prizes. 

Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.

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