Braham Schools excited about 3-D printer

Braham Area High School is in the process of getting a 3-D printer.

Greg Winter, Braham Area Schools superintendent, estimates that it will be in the classroom by January, he said. The action was approved during the Braham School Board meeting Nov. 18.

Winter was inspired to get one for the high school after touring the Secondary Technical Education Program in Anoka. The latest technology has been at the forefront of bioscience and manufacturing, from creating heart valves to prototypes. So far, the project is half funded, with hopes that further donations and Perkins Grants will pay for the rest. Industrial art teacher Luke Becker said in an interview Tuesday that the students would use the $3,500 MakerBot printer to produce parts for various projects.

“I want to build cool stuff, that’s what I want to do,” Becker said. Having the printer is one of the many initiatives that would help students see the variety of jobs in the marketplace, Becker added.

In other news, the high school’s Wildlife Biology Class is participating in the World Wildlife Fund adoption foundation fundraiser to help endangered animals. This is the second year biology teacher Juanita Worthley has headed the operation, she said. Students have raised $57 so far, and they have a goal of $75 to adopt a snow leopard. The class raised money by self donations, hosting a booth at conferences and having a candy guessing game at lunch. The WWF is an environmental conservation nonprofit. Last year, the biology class raised $50 and adopted a pigmy elephant.

High school juniors Saffron O’Brien and Quinn Richmond are recipients of the Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership, or ExCEL, award. Students apply to the statewide competition, and recipients are chosen based on academic achievement, leadership and community involvement.

This is the 18th year that the Minnesota State High School League has sponsored the awards, and award winners will be officially recognized on the league’s website Feb. 3.

The board also formally accepted Shane Knutson’s resignation. He started with Braham Area High School in May 2009 as the district technology coordinator, and his last day will be Nov. 29. He resigned to accept another position in Mora.