3D Printing Club Fuses its Way into the Future

The+club%27s+current+project+is+to+create+a+pencil+case.+They+make+and+finalize+their+3D+design+on+the+software+Fusion360+and+then+upload+this+program+to+sophomore+Ryan+Yang%27s+at-home+3D+printer.

Photo Courtesy of Ryan Yang

The club's current project is to create a pencil case. They make and finalize their 3D design on the software Fusion360 and then upload this program to sophomore Ryan Yang's at-home 3D printer.

The technology of 3D printing is used to build anything from small objects to architectural masterpieces like bridges. Carrying this revolutionary technology onto our campus are co-presidents of the 3D printing/CAD (Computer Aided Development) club junior Tanisha Naik and sophomore Ryan Yang.

Although this is not the first year 3D printing has happened at Portola, this school year is the first that the club has been operational. 

“I just want to further people’s skills in design and 3D printing, because I think it’s a good career path for people who are interested in STEM careers,” Naik said. “I just hope next year since I’m going to be a senior, I can have more people find a creative outlet that they want through STEM.”

Introducing students to the new developments of engineering and design not only opens up a whole new realm of careers, but also gives them a look into the future of creation and production. 

3D printing and CAD are more beneficial than ever, and in the end it’s fun to design something. You can take this idea in your head, and then put it out and create an amazing product that you can actually hold.”

— Tanisha Naik

“I basically wanted to just show other people how cool 3D printing was, just because I thought it was really fun,” Yang said. “I also wanted to get more awareness about [joining] 3D printing because many people are intimidated by the thought of creating their own stuff on plastic and I just really wanted to show people how easy and quick it is to get into without many materials.”

Yang and Naik’s personal passions for 3D printing started when they searched for YouTube tutorials to learn how to use Fusion 360, a cloud-based 3D computer aided design program. Yang and Naik came up with the idea to start a 3D printing and AutoCAD club individually, and their clubs were eventually merged. 

“I was really surprised that nobody had already created the club, because I think 3D printing is something that will be incorporated into many parts of the technology of the future,” Yang said. 

3D printing has been able to broaden the STEM spectrum, by giving students on campus a way to express themselves in a unique way. 

“I created some mods for Rubik’s cubes. It’s kind of nerdy but fun. I also created fidget spinners when those were popular, and ping pong paddles when we didn’t want to buy our own set,” Yang said with a laugh. “We played on a table with books as a center divider.” 

The 3D printing club also works on creating products for practical uses. They are currently working on a phone stand and phone case project. 

“It’s not this traditional way of making parts by hand, so in this day and age we are furthering this technology and [making] advancements to it,” Naik said. “3D printing and CAD are more beneficial than ever, and in the end it’s fun to design something. You can take this idea in your head, and then put it out and create an amazing product that you can actually hold.”