Auburn University giving Huntsville City students real life experience

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Huntsville City Schools and Auburn University are coming together to give students real-world engineering and additive manufacturing experience with curriculum and research. This is the first school district nationwide to have this partnership.

"It's the best thing for our students. It's the best thing for our schools as we really bring to life what they've learned in the classroom all of the years and actually apply it to what's happening in the real world," said Huntsville City Schools Superintendent, Christie Finley.

"It takes engineering from being some abstract concept to real-life application and I think it's highly motivating for students," said Christopher Roberts, dean of Auburn's college of engineering.

Students at Jemison High School are getting the opportunity to experiment and learn the necessary skills they're going to need for their future engineering careers. One of their experiments is 3-D printing themselves and that's just the beginning for hopeful mechanical engineer and Jemison senior Derrick Hudson.

"It's phenomenal you can just do so much," Hudson said. "You can 3-D print like the printers back here. You can learn how to use CAT design software, which most engineering programs use. So, it's really good to have an extra foot in the door after college."

Finley says additive manufacturing is the future of jobs for our current students and this program will help put them ahead of the curve.

Roberts says they chose Huntsville City Schools for this partnership because of how the district has already shown an interest in additive manufacturing. He says Auburn's research programs will benefit just as much as the high school students will.