Florence, Ala. (WHNT) – High school junior Trenton Gillis is one of five students taking the Design Engineering Technology 101 class at Shoals Christian School.It’s the first class of its kind offered in northwest Alabama.
The class offers students the opportunity to experiment with tools that are used in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math. The class takes place at one of two STEM labs at the school. The lab includes 5 state-of-the-art computer stations and a 3D printer.
“We like to have hands on opportunities for our kids here. And this 3D printer and the design class allows students to learn how mechanics work in the real world,” said headmaster Jim Koan.
This class is unique because of the 3D designing and printing skills students learn. According to Koan, this is a skill needed for many jobs in the sciences.
“I’ve been thinking about going into engineering for a long time. I never really knew what it was and this class is introducing me to the basics of engineering. It is convincing me more and more to go into the engineering field,” said Gillis.
At this time, the class is only offered to junior and seniors. Koan said the goal is to expand this class to the middle school grades in the future.