Loyola University Chicago

Department of Computer Science

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Programming and Teaching

Programming and Teaching

Lucas Rudd, a physics and computer science senior teaching middle and high schoolers about 3D printing during his internship at iD Tech

Intern profile:  Lucas Rudd
Loyola Senior Lucas Rudd spent seven weeks this summer at iD Tech, where he taught middle and high schoolers 3D printing—a process of making three-dimensional solid objects from a digital file. Rudd, who is majoring in physics and computer science, talks about his internship and how it helped him discover a love for teaching and explore his interests in software development.


What attracted you to this internship opportunity at iD Tech?                                                                                                                                                                                     I really enjoyed being able to have a little bit of time to program and give examples to students. Last year I taught C++ and Java, but my boss this year wanted me to teach 3D printing, and I thought it would be an amazing experience.  I’ve worked with the hardware, but I’ve never really had the opportunity to get intimate with the equipment.  It was a chance to really understand the software and the hardware behind.


What did you do during your internship?                                                                                                                            
I worked with the 13- to 18-year-olds. I had a few weeks with the 10- to 12-year-olds. Day 1 we spent time introducing them to the software and after lunch we’d build simple objects like primitive shapes. Day 2, I’d give them challenges like building a robot or a rocket ship. By the end of the week, we were building multi-piece projects like windmills with locks and gears—parts that had movement.


What’s something interesting you uncovered during your internship?                                                                                                                                                                            I really learned that I like to teach. It’s not something I want to do right now but maybe in my 30s. I found that I really enjoy teaching and I like working with kids that were 11, 12, and 13. I liked seeing them grasp concepts of things they never had the chance to work with before and to see their faces light up when their work came alive.


What was your favorite part of working there?
I liked the way they accommodated the staff members. We were all friends. We went out to eat together, occasionally for dinner. I could always go to someone if I needed help. It seems like they really cared about the students learning the material. It wasn’t just a business.


How do you think this internship will help you in your career?                                                                                                                                                                                  I met a lot of parents of the students at the students’ showcase at the end of the week. Many gave me their business cards and contacts for future job referrals or to put me in touch with others in the industry. That’s definitely a huge perk that I didn’t think of when I went into this job. I also took iD Tech classes as well, so I was able to further my knowledge in other areas.


If you could teach any program, software or aspect of computer science, what would it be?                                                                                                                                                                                       I’d like to work with Autocad, another design software tool that you can use to design natural material projects like if something needs to be carved out of wood and needs to be precise. I’d like to get more experience with that software because that’s what I’d actually be using in the Physics field if I was going to go into engineering.