May 11, 2023
This year is the third annual Onshape Educator Awards. Onshape received nominations from peers, colleagues, friends, and students. Submissions came from 42 different countries and represented educators of grade 5 through the university level.
Kevin Soertsz, an educator at the HELP International School in Malaysia, presents real-world problems and asks students to find solutions. He has asked students to design hardware on the International Space Station, focus on aerodynamics in Formula 1 car design, design Go-Karts, and create developmental toys.
Soertsz asked his engineering students to design a toy for younger students that helps develop balance and coordination. These products that are designed in Onshape by students are also 3D printed, tested and revised.
The Onshape University Educator of the Year Winner is Dr. Mark Palmeri, who was nominated for this year’s award for the impact he has had on his students through his teaching and the projects he facilitates. He is a professor at Duke University in the Biomedical Engineering Department.
Dr. Palmeri has used Onshape in his courses to teach students about medical device design and development. In his courses, students use Onshape to design and prototype medical devices, such as endoscopic tools and orthopedic implants. Through these projects, students learn skills in engineering design and prototyping, and gain experience working with the latest software and technology.
He teaches students in a project-based learning environment, where they can collaborate on projects. These projects have included designing and fabricating parts for prosthetics, altering toys for differently abled children, and making prizes for children who attend science camps.
Onshape also opened a new category of award this year, Mentor of the Year.
For the past 4 years, Mrs. Abha Bosworth has served as the coach of FIRST Tech Challenge robotics Team 16884, Mechanical Advantage, in San Diego, CA. Mechanical Advantage is also a public charity that uses robotics-based STEM education in an effort to improve children's lives. Mechanical Advantage uses Onshape to teach CAD to students worldwide and at home at no cost.
During the pandemic, Coach Abha a frontline worker in her job as a physician assistant, and coached the team while they partnered with a local civic association to design personal protective equipment for first responders and essential workers. The team then used its 3D printers to print headbands for face shields and ear savers to tension face masks. The team shared its CAD models with other people with 3D printers. Via this effort, over 10,000 face shield parts and hundreds of ear savers were manufactured on home printers, and the completed PPE was delivered to hospitals, businesses and clinics throughout the United States and Mexico.
The team continues to teach CAD to students throughout San Diego County at weeklong summer and holiday camps and as part of after-school programs, like the robotics program the team runs at Cristo Rey San Diego High School, a school predominately serving students living below the federal poverty level. To date, the team has taught CAD to over 2,000 students at home and abroad.
Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.