University News

Building a Secure Future: 3D House Model Project

Published: November 23, 2016 | Author: Lexi Carter | Category: Academics

Front right view of houseBuilding a 3D model of a house sounds like something you’d only find in an architect’s office or see on an HGTV show. Yet this software and know-how is used at Southern Utah University in the Engineering Technology Program to educate students every day, and in Dustin Gale’s case, to support a fellow community member in need.

As his capstone project for the program, Gale has created a 3D model of a house, complete with interior and exterior views, color schemes and detailed layout features using Revit software. The house was designed specifically for Rebekah Laird, a Cedar City resident and member of the Canyon Creek Women’s Crisis Center (CCWCC) Women’s Group. 

“Dustin is helping create my safe haven,” said Laird when asked about the project.

Coming out of an abusive marriage, Laird’s intention in collaborating with Gale is to provide security for her family and to support him to complete his capstone while demonstrating his considerable career-ready skills. As a member of the Canyon Creek Women’s Crisis Center Women’s Group, Laird works with Andrea Donovan, SUU student success advisor and women’s group facilitator at CCWCC. Laird was aware of Donovan’s position at SUU and asked her if someone could help create working blueprints for her future home.

The entire project has moved a lot quicker because Laird reached out. Her self-advocacy has allowed her to gain knowledge of the resources SUU offers and the connections that can be made between students, faculty, staff and fellow community members.

Dustin Gale“As a university that offers excellent project-based programs, it is part of SUU’s academic mission to support students to integrate what they are learning in the classroom with experiential opportunities,” said Donovan. “Community members and students are engaged and resourceful and the SUU emphasis on experiential learning honors and facilitates collaborations that benefit both community members and students.”

Having a practical application to his project helped Gale to complete quality work for Laird and to gain industry experience in 3D modeling and partnering with a client.

“All students in the Engineering Technology Program are required to complete a capstone project, so when my professor asked if I wanted to help Rebekah it was perfect,” said Gale. “3D modeling is right up my alley, plus doing the project for a specific person put more meaning behind the work I did.”

This project is an example of the many opportunities available for successful student/community partnerships. Gale will graduate December of 2016 and hopes to use his degree working for a drafting company or in architectural design.

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