Sparking an interest in 3D printing, with Stephanie Piper

The Smart Community Podcast

By Zoe Eather

Sparking an interest in 3D printing, with Stephanie Piper

Wednesday, 31 October

In this episode of the Smart City Podcast, I interview Stephanie Piper, 3D printing enthusiast, and the Community Engagement Coordinator at the University of Southern Queensland in Toowoomba, where she runs their Maker Space. In this episode we discuss Steph’s journey from studying biomedicine and vaccine development, to being involved in the 3D printing space and why she’s so passionate about the possibilities and opportunities 3D printing technology provides for Smart Cities. Steph explains what 3D printing actually is, and what kind of people and projects are happening at her Maker Space, as well as some of the ways 3D printing can be used to help recycle and reuse plastics, and implications for the circular economy in these particular areas. Steph shares her passion for educating people about this technology, and her views about integrating across disciplines, governments and academia, as well as some of the emerging trends in the 3D printing and maker space arena. What we don’t discuss in this episode is something exciting that has happened for Stephanie since we recorded this interview back in September. Along with a team she formed at the Toowoomba Startup Weekend Women, Steph has started a business to help engage girls in STEM and to teach electronics in primary schools. It’s called Spark Girls and they were the winning team at the Toowoomba Startup Weekend Women, which then saw them head to the Asia Pacific Start Up Weekend Women finals in Bali a couple of weeks ago. Very excitingly, Spark Girls emerged the winner in Bali as well, so that is a wonderful achievement and just the beginning for this fledgling business. We’ll post some links in the show notes if you want to know more about it and hopefully we can catch up with Steph again in the new year to hear more about how she’s educating the next generation and encouraging girls to be engaged in STEM. But in the meantime, this is a great conversation about the possibilities of 3D printing. As always, I hope you enjoy listening to this episode as much as I enjoyed making it.
Find the full show notes: thesmartcitypodcast.com
Connect with Steph at her blog or on Twitter @sjpiper145 and find out more about her new business Spark Girlz at their website.
Connect with me via email: zoe@thesmartcitypodcast.com
Connect via Twitter and Facebook @smartcitypod
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