CADD students win drafting award for design

Andrea Elsholz, Writer

Fitting a grill perfectly on a car, shaping and reshaping the design like a clay puzzle piece, everything had to be considered in the American Society of Body Engineers (ASBE) foundation’s annual design challenge. On April 19, seven Computer Aided-Design and Drafting (CADD) students found out that they placed in the competition and won awards.

“My students were required to design the front of a pickup truck,” CADD teacher Andy Cocagne said. “They got to compete with students all over southeastern Michigan. Out of the 20 entries we made, seven of my students placed and won drafting awards.”

The second place winner, junior Nathan Zender, reports that even with his successful outcome he encountered many challenges while designing.

“I was very surprised that I placed second,” Zender said. “I didn’t feel it was the best I could do, but I guess others liked it. I like CADD because it is hands on. It allows you to create things that you can actually see how they fit together.”

At the ASBE awards banquet, at least 50 students were reported to have won drafting awards out of the 100 or so that were in attendance for their successes in designing the front grill of a car.

“I had to design the end of the hood of the car with a logo,” junior Sarah Pohl said. “It was difficult to make a good design. I was surprised when I won, that something so simple would get an award like that.”

While the drafting and design award provided a good challenge for students, CADD teachers were also able to evaluate their students’ individual understanding of design.

“This shows that they understand how design evolves start to finish,” Cocagne said. “You generate ideas, eliminate the bad ones and build on the good ones. CADD helps designers figure out how things work, how they move, how nice they’ll look, how to arrange things so they won’t break. And you learn how to fit parts with everything else; lots of people are working on a car and they need to communicate.”

The CADD classes at the high school aim to provide an in-depth understanding of the world of computer animation. Students like Pohl have also found a career within the class.

“I love designing 2D and 3D things on the computer,” Pohl said. “CADD is a very fun class and I wouldn’t be the same without it. If I hadn’t taken this class I wouldn’t have discovered that this is what I want to do.”

Throughout the ASBE challenge, students found where they stood in the world of computer animated design. The students joined CADD in hopes of gaining in-depth knowledge of how everything interacts in the world; using this knowledge to create their own.