Companies partner to promote engineering studies in South Dakota

PTC® announced today it is working with Caterpillar and STARBASE South Dakota to develop the next generation of engineers in the Black Hills area of South Dakota. STARBASE South Dakota is one of 75 United States Department of Defense STARBASE programs that serve young people in communities across the country to motivate them in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education and to pursue STEM careers.

PTC will provide the curriculum and training support for the STARBASE South Dakota instructors and Caterpillar will provide mentoring and engineering support for middle and secondary schools in the Black Hills region through its Engineering Design Center in Rapid City, South Dakota.

The DoD STARBASE program has introduced 3-D engineering design and manufacturing using PTC software to over 610,000 students across the United States and expects an additional 70,000 students to participate in 2012. The program provides students with 20-25 hours of real world STEM experiences. The program also helps develop positive self-esteem, teaches goal-setting skills and encourages teamwork through challenging hands-on activities.

“The support from PTC and Caterpillar provides STARBASE South Dakota with access to experienced engineers and mentors to assist with our programs,” said Sarah Jensen, director of STARBASE, Rapid City, South Dakota. “STARBASE South Dakota creates a pipeline for workforce development and has a direct impact on students. As an example, one of our middle school students spent the day with a Caterpillar engineer and walked away empowered with the knowledge that he now has the ability to be successful. That is proof that programs like STARBASE work.”