Cambridge Regional College chooses SOLIDWORKS

Software’s popularity in job market – as well as ease of use, installation, and maintenance – influenced purchasing decision

Software’s popularity in job market – as well as ease of use, installation, and maintenance – influenced purchasing decision

Cambridge Regional College’s Engineering department has purchased 20 licenses of SOLIDWORKS Education Edition 3D mechanical design software so that its Higher National Diploma Motor Sport & City & Guilds Engineering students will learn 3D solid modelling with the same software used by the UK’s leading design and manufacturing companies.

The Engineering department at the college is currently looking at global industry requirements and is looking to provide students with the necessary skills to enable them to succeed in a highly competitive technology based workplace. As part of their curriculum, Motor Sport & Engineering students will now learn solid modelling and engineering techniques on 20 desktops equipped with SOLIDWORKS software. Students will also learn the fundamentals of 3D design analysis with Simulation Analysis software included with each license of SOLIDWORKS Student Edition.

Prior to choosing SOLIDWORKS, the college thoroughly evaluated several other mechanical design software packages.

“It wasn’t just SOLIDWORKS’ market position or reputation that made the difference,” said Gareth Plant, Engineering lecturer at the College. “Above all, we were convinced it would fit into our curriculum because of its ease of use, simplicity of installation and maintenance, and the availability of specialised courseware and the Student Design Kit. Importantly, we wanted to give our students the career advantage of using the very same software used by the majority of local and UK businesses for new product development. SOLIDWORKS is also fully integrated with the Colleges recent purchase of SolidCAM manufacturing software, and so the decision was simple”

“Lessons can last only two hours, and the lecturers simply don’t have the time to teach students the mechanics of the software. With SOLIDWORKS, lecturers can immediately begin teaching the concepts and processes of engineering design.”

Alan Ward, Head of Engineering Academy comments:

“We have also found in the many planning sessions we have held along with other diploma consortia in other counties, that SOLIDWORKS software is a preference over some of the other  educational software available, as it bring more reality to the designs”

In preparing for the new Engineering and Manufacturing & Product Design diplomas that will be running for 14-19 year olds across the Cambridge Area Partnership as from September 2010 and 2011 respectively. (This includes Linton Village College, Swavesey Village college and Cambridge Regional College as the Lead institutions with interest from Soham village college. All as delivery centres, with other schools feeding into them) Collectively we have discussed various CAD software available and have chosen ‘SOLIDWORKS’ as our preference. All schools will also have ‘SOLIDWORKS’ as their teaching resource.

Furthermore, at Cambridge Regional College I have found that there has been an increase in the adult evening class enrolments to ‘SOLIDWORKS’ over the ‘AutoDESK Inventor’package, showing that industry is moving more towards ‘SOLIDWORKS’ as their standard Solid Modeling software over other products.

Also, our level 2 and 3 learners that study CAD as a unit to their qualifications also find that ‘SOLIDWORKS’ is easier to get started with in the first instance and thus they prefer this package as results are quickly established, this breads interest and success.

We are now in the process of also adding ‘SolidCAM’ on top of ‘SOLIDWORKS’, so students can carry out the full process from design concept, all the way through to the end rapid prototyped product and to CNC machining. All this within a short space time. This clearly meets the aspirations of training and our learners.

Innova Systems provide Cambridge Regional College with exceptional support and guidance.  We are delighted to continue and extend our partnership” Said Alan.

Mark Bradford, Managing Director of Innova Systems said “Cambridge Regional College has chosen to modernise their engineering program with SOLIDWORKS which is clearly proving to be the standard for 3D Design”