It's great to see Americans taking up the reigns on 3D Printing; specifically, providing more widespread education on the topic. While certainly a true form of manufacturing, 3D printers still have a the stigma of toy machines - toy creators, trinket builders, but toy machines nonetheless. As 3D Printing becomes more reliable, affordable, and easier to do, it will become like smartphones: eventually involving itself in the everyday facets of human life. 

America Makes, in their own words, is "Accelerating the adoption of additive manufacturing technologies in the United States to increase domestic manufacturing competitiveness." 

As 3D Printing industry writes:

Their observations included the superficial and overly-theoretical nature of training, a lack of awareness of the business case for 3D printing, a lack of objectivity when using products for training, and the lack of integration of diverse disciplines in training courses, such as biomimicry, reverse engineering and design simulation.

Orientated towards application

To address these concerns, the ACADEMI program features a specific, “end-to-end approach to 3D printing training” involving the background, theory and practise of 3D printing. Hughes, noting that technological developments are forcing manufacturing to go through a renaissance, set up the program to give employees a practical means to apply their technology within their companies.

In an interview, Hughes noted the greater importance of making ACADEMI “application orientated”. He stated that “the true game-changer” is in “design innovation”, since the value of 3D printing can only be truly realised “if we free ourselves from thinking that a product or part must look the same as it always has”.

Read the rest of the article here: 3D Printing Industry