In the meantime, I want to reply to some of you who already contributed suggestions.
Cyberdemon wrote:...Do students have access to things like soldering workstations, CNC mills, development boards? I wish things like Raspberry Pi and Arduino and boxes of wires and resistors and components were more readily available when I was in school. Students can buy a lot of that stuff themselves, but nothing is worse than having to shut down a project and wait 2 days because you realize you ran out of the right resistor.
I like this idea. Should ID students be preoccupied with polishing the metallic texture on a virtual knob, or developing an elemental knowledge of technology components and associated behavior?
As a potential hiring manager, I'd be 10x more interested in someone who knew the latter.
Many of you suggested using the money towards electronics (i.e arudino). I'm happy to say that a couple years ago we began an electronics lab with a course dedicated to thoroughly learning circuitry, Arduino, and even some Raspberry Pi. Many of us who have completed this course have continued to use electronics in our prototype models as we've progressed through the program.
louis leblanc wrote: getting students to build things physically is great but can get very expensive very fast. I studied mech eng but in my final year, we had a design class where among other design tasks we had to build a physical prototype.
We spend a lot of time in the shop and are all well versed in constructing prototypes and model making.
iab wrote:For $10K, I'd give 20 students a $500 budget (or however you want to divvy it up) to spend at the local 3D print house.
I agree it does get expensive, but unfortunately, we cannot buy consumables with this money. And as I mentioned earlier, we already have FDM and SLA Printers.
seurban wrote:+1 on the photo setup if you don't have one already. Having a really good camera, a couple softbox lights, and a backdrop set up and able to be used at any time has been really useful at work.
The photo booth idea is cool and many of you +1'd it. Some of us have soft light boxes that we share and that seems to be working very well. Not everyone knows how to use a camera, so this one might be further considered.
I personally like the suggestion of an injection molding machine. I think manufacturability knowledge is an area where we can improve, but as many of you mentioned the die and upkeep can pose a problem.
Once again, thank you all for your suggestions. I hope we can figure this out soon