It's back to the grind.
Summer is almost over, and for students, it’s time to think about getting back to school. Summertime is also historically slower when it comes to professional work, and some countries shut down almost completely for the month of August.
All of this means that some of your Onshape skills may have receded, or in the case of vacationers, you may have missed a few Onshape updates.
Luckily, I wouldn’t dare let you miss the latest news from the Onshape team.
Catch Up on Onshape Improvements
I hope you enjoyed your vacation…
But you might have missed a few things. As an Onshape user, you likely know that we issue an update every three weeks. Depending on your vacation schedule, you might have missed one or two.
Fortunately, there are some easy ways for you to catch up.
First, when you launch Onshape, you will be presented with an alert notifying you that some things have changed. Simply click on the alert and you will be magically transported to the Onshape Forums where you can catch up by reading the “Improvements to Onshape” thread. I always enjoy seeing the comments, too.
Visit the Onshape Learning Center
Now is also a good time to take a fresh look at the Onshape Learning Center. The Learning Center gets updated regularly, too, and there have been some major changes this summer.
Of special note is the new FeatureScript Fundamentals course, which was released in June. The course comes with 27 new videos and several hands-on practice exercises to get you started on developing your own Custom Features in Onshape Part Studios.
Get Certified in Onshape
The waning days of summer are a good time to think about getting your Onshape certification. The Certified Onshape Professional exam certifies that a user is proficient in Onshape modeling and data management strategies. If you pass the exam with a score of 70% or greater, you will receive an electronic certificate with a badge, and you will be considered a Certified Onshape Professional (something to add to your LinkedIn profile).
Catch Up on the Innovator’s Insider Podcast
Michael “The Professor” LaFleche and I post a new recorded episode every two weeks.
But did you know that we also host a live broadcast when an Onshape update is released, typically every three weeks? We look at all the changes and enhancements and offer commentary on our favorite new features and functionality. You can join us on the stream and get involved in the conversation via the chat.
If you’ve missed a few episodes, you can catch up here.
Attend an Onshape User Group Meeting
Every two weeks we gather online for an Onshape User Group meeting hosted by a fellow Onshape user.
Topics usually include tips and tricks, core modeling functionality, and special topics like FeatureScript, using Configurations, and Branching and Merging. Meetings are held using Zoom, and all are welcome and encouraged to attend.
Are You a Student Heading Back to School?
Summer break is a time for family vacations, video games, and fun. I hope you enjoyed every minute of it. But now it's time to get back to or start your STEM education. I reached out to a couple of top educators for their tips on making the return to STEM class easier.
Ed Charlwood from Nottingham High School in England recommends the following: “The forgetting curve is real! Give your memory a pre-return to school workout; look back at previous projects, log in to your systems, try to repeat something you did before the vacation. This spaced repetition will help your recall and strengthen your working memory and get you a head start on your colleagues.”
If you are just now pursuing STEM, this advice from Dr. Laura Brown, a high school STEM educator from Mesquite, Texas, is sure to help: “Start looking now for what programs are at various colleges, or even what is required in high school, depending on your current age. Most colleges will be happy to send you information about their programs, connect you with current students or advisors, etc.”
“Look for organizations you can follow, join, etc. What organizations exist for the careers you are interested in? This is a good way for you to network and learn about things you might be interested in on social media accounts such as Twitter, or even joining an organization as a student member.”
That’s great advice!
The End of the Year is Nigh
For a lot of companies, the last three months of the year are the busiest. For students, the first half-semester can set the tone for the rest of the school year. Throw in the holidays and you find that there isn’t going to be a lot of time to get things done. So, with just a couple of weeks left of summer, take some time now to refresh, reeducate, and re-energize.