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Student Licenses

Question asked by Gary Lucas on Jun 11, 2018
Latest reply on Jul 6, 2018 by Dan Golthing

When I started at this company a product had been started by a student using a student license and the owner did not know that the files he created would not be usable by a commercial version of SW because every file gets marked as being from a student version and watermarks any drawings it is used in.  We made converting the files to a usable version as a condition of us purchasing seats of SW as I would otherwise get SolidEdge which I had used for 10 years.  SW converted the files, and we now have 4 seats and soon to add a fifth.  Good decision.


We have an engineering shortage I've heard.  Engineering schools are expensive and difficult.  I have 3 young engineers working under me, with a 4th starting soon.  Their SW are woeful at best from college.  I have to spend months of further training in the proper use of SW and they are quite slow.  Never having done real work, just student projects is simply not enough experience.  They don't learn about interfacing parts through BOMs, building libraries properly etc.


So why can't we help these young engineers EARN their way through school actually using SolidWorks in an internship and summer jobs?  If a student license simply expired completely after a period covering classes and summer work and had to be renewed by the school they would learn a incredible amount more and might even be useful coming in our door instead of us having to drop $5000 to train them!


Here's where this becomes interesting.  My grandson applied for a STEM program run by the county and was accepted into it instead of the regular High School.  As a freshman he learned AutoCAD, and since I use it most every day we connected over that.  Then they moved on to Inventor in the second semester.   All 3D programs are similar so again we were able to talk about how stuff gets done.  Next year he will be exposed to SolidWorks.  He's only 14 but quite mature and a straight A student.  He used his snow shoveling money to build a foosball table with an arduino scoring system for his robotics class project.  He did one heck of a job and learned about nominal sized materials, 3D printed the men and used our home CNC to cut out parts and make an enclosure for the electronics.


I got my boss to agree to hire him as an intern for the summer.  He is to young to work in the shop but I actually live near him in NJ while I work in Baltimore and spend 3 days down there each week.  So I work from home each week too.  So he can work in my home office which has two desks.  I actually have a research project involving solar, plumbing, and the collecting of various data as a prelude to developing an actual product.  He will need to model the equipment and then help me purchase parts, then make some parts and build it under my supervision. Can you think of a better way for a potential engineer to spend the summer?


So does he model it in Inventor which we can't use or SolidWorks, which we also won't be able to use?