Wildly Creative Students Present 3D-Printed Inventions in Battle for Prize Money at Fourth Annual ocMaker Challenge

Airwolf 3D engineer Hasanain Shuja teaching visitors about 3D printing at the ocMaker Challenge.

Design and build, or significantly repurpose, a product that will solve a problem, need or want.

Ever see a five-pronged fork that makes eating spaghetti easier or a purse with a built-in light? How about an alarm clock that knows if you are still laying in bed and keeps going off until you get up? These are just a few of the award-winning entries from last year’s ocMaker Challenge. One can only imagine what this year’s competitors have in store.

ocMaker Challenge 2017 is the largest student maker challenge in California. The free, family-friendly event is open to the public and will be held May 12-13 at the Hutton Sports Center at Chapman University. No ordinary science fair, the ocMaker Challenge is an integrated STEM project that incorporates elements of art and design by challenging middle school, high school, and college students to design and manufacture an innovative invention with the use of a 3D printer. The prompt presented to students is, “Design and build, or significantly repurpose, a product that will solve a problem, need or want.”

Organized and supported by the Orange County Department of Education’s Career Technical Education Partnership (CTEp), Vital Link and Career Technical Education of Orange County, the ocMaker Challenge is a unique, county-wide STEM competition that is unlike any other in the world.

“Unlike us, these students are not yet jaded by everyday limitations, such as manufacturing constraints or even the idea of gravity,” pointed out CEO Eva Wolf of Airwolf 3D, a local 3D printer manufacturer that has partnered closely with the ocMaker Challenge since its beginning in 2013. “[Students] simply…

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