• The C.D. Design Lab

    In an effort to create more meanigful experiences for our students, we are changing our storage/finishing/catch-all room in the materials lab into a clean, high-tech design space. 

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    For a closer look at the plans, click HERE

    The CD Design Lab Project

    The Technology Education department at Central Dauphin has always tried to remain cutting-edge, offering the best possible experiences to our students. We believe our program is one of the best in the state and are always looking for ways to make it better.

    So what do we offer our students?

    • Three levels of engineering with hands-on STEM projects and applications.
    • CAD experience in technical design and architecture.
    • Robotics, 3D modeling, computer game design, and computer animation.
    • Digital graphics, promotional graphics, and television production.

    Our courses are popular and classroom space can sometimes be at a premium. We currently have a room in our materials lab that has been used for material and project storage, project finishing, and just a plain “catch-all” area over the years. We would love to turn this into a design lab classroom where we can place high-tech tools that can not only be used by our technology students, but may potentially become a resource for other classes in the building as well. Because the room is inside our materials lab, traditional material fabrication tools will also be available- the perfect blend for problem solving and prototyping!

    Our plan for the Design Lab:

    The room is enclosed, enabling it to be a clean space within the materials lab for machines like 3D printers, laser cutters, robotics, electronics education, and small CNC machines. The room is already wired for eight computers with easy expansion for ten machines. There is room for a flexible workspace in the middle, allowing 20 students to work comfortably in the Design Lab. Take a look at the drawing above of our proposed plan or click HERE for a better view of the drawing.

    What we need:

    With tight district budgets, we need to look to outside sources for help. While we already have some resources for the lab (i.e. software, laser cutter, CNC router), here is a list of what we need to purchase:

    Costs

    What if we don’t make our goal? What if we exceed it?

    We can always scale back. While furniture is necessary, we can add computers in stages. If we go over our goal, we can look at purchasing laptops that can be used wirelessly in the center flexible space, making it a 1:1 room where all students will have a computer to use. We can also look at adding more resources like CNC machines, electronic equipment, robotics, etc. There is never a shortage of technology opportunities we can add for the students. 

    Any Questions?

    If you have any questions about this project, please reach out to any of us in the Technology Education Department:

    • Jim Chronister, jchronister@cdschools.org
    • Bill Etsweiler, wetsweiler@cdschools.org
    • Jason Hancock, jhancock@cdschools.org
    • Jeff Sweigard, jssweigard@cdschools.org
    • Marc Vogle, mcvogle@cdschools.org

    The Progress Journal:

    As we move along with our plans, we will use this webpage to post updates of our progress.

    • Week of November 6, 2017:
      The initial plans for the lab are finished! The department is excited about what we are planning to do and trying to figure out how we can make it work. Because we need to consider the impact this plan will have on the materials lab, and our other labs, we have a lot of organizational work to do to figure out better space utilization.
    • Week of November 13, 2017:
      After several years, maintenace was able to replace a missing window between the future design lab and the materials lab. This sets the stage to be able to make the future design lab a clean room for computers, 3D printers, and CNC equipment. The next task involves a lot of cleanup in the room!
    • Week of December 4, 2017:
      Tara Olvera over at Admin came through for us! She found us some tables for the lab which will save some expenses. The plan is taking shape.
    • Week of January 8, 2018:
      With our budget for next year, we were able to order 2 3D printer kits and wall cabinets for the lab. With the approval of the new Drones and Flight course for next year, we will be getting the 3rd printer through the course. Things are really shaping up! However, we need to think about funding for the 10 PC computers needed for the lab. The next step for now is to empty the room, patch the walls and floor, hang a screen, projector, make a white board, and reorganize the materials lab for the stuff we take out of the room. That should keep us busy well into spring. 
    • Week of April 16, 2018:
      It has been a busy 3 weeks of remodeling! The classroom has been cleaned, floors stripped and waxed, walls patched and painted, and a new whiteboard. It now looks like a classroom again! With the end of the school year near, we may take a break from the room and start fresh in the fall to try to find ways to add some computers to the room. Thaks for everyone's help!