Though PTC University Technical Instructor,
, only joined PTC payroll in 2021, he has been working with PTC software for 25 years! Before moving into his current role, Samba used his mechanical engineering degree and professional certifications in work that spanned several roles and industries, including mold making, machine building, CAD/CAM consulting, and the oil and gas industry.
Now, Samba shares his wealth of knowledge and experience with others through PTCU’s Creo training courses
Ever wonder what PTC University courses are like and if they’d be worth your time? We recently sat down with Samba to hear what someone can expect when they sit down to take Creo training courses.
Keep reading to find out what we learned.
Thanks for meeting with us today, Samba. To get started, can you describe the typical job role and experience level of your students?
Sure, I find most students are Design Engineers. They might have experience with another 3D CAD platform and they’re just starting to use Creo Parametric as a new user. They might have recently accepted a new job with a company that uses Creo, or their employer might be switching solutions.
Sometimes a student will have as much experience with Creo as I do, but they’ve been using an older version and need to get up to speed with the current version. Or maybe they’ve had time away from Creo and need a refresher course to jump back in. They might be looking for new tricks to increase efficiency.
Also, I sometimes have students who are CAD Admins or CAD team leaders. They might be gauging whether the course would be helpful for their teams.
Can you explain what a student can expect out of a course, for example, Fundamentals of Modeling 1?
In Fundamentals of Modeling 1
, we don’t expect students to have much, if any, experience in modeling. We talk about the basics, like the part modeling framework and solid modeling concepts. We talk about some of the shortcut keys that they can use to handle a model. For example, how to spin the model, how to pivot around a point or enable a spin center, how to zoom or pan, etc. We look at commands and how to edit existing features.
Then, at a very basic level, we start looking at how to make sketches in Creo.
Do you also teach Creo certification courses?
If someone goes through all the Creo Fundamentals courses, they are eligible to take the Creo Parametric Fundamentals Certification Exam
. Then there’s a Professional Level Certification
, too. So yes, I teach courses that a student takes when they’re preparing to take a Creo Certification Exam.
We also have a Specialization program
where a student can take one or more skillset-based courses, and then they can earn a Specialization Badge after taking a short exam.
That’s interesting about Specialization Badges. Can you tell us what some of the most popular Specialization Badges are?
Yeah, I would say Modeling, Surfacing, and Sheetmetal have been most popular. And, I think those are useful courses even if that particular topic isn’t your primary concern. I would say you’d still benefit from those.
The Assembly Specialization is beneficial, as well, because that's a common feature in Creo that you’d typically use. The Documentation Specialization is also interesting. It covers 2D drawings, creation of 3D, and adding model annotations, which leads into Model-Based Definition (MBD).
Let’s say I’ve never taken a PTCU course. What courses should I take to start?
I would say to begin with, go ahead and work through the Fundamentals courses. Then, take the Fundamentals Certification Exam
. You might as well take the exam if you’ve taken the Fundamentals courses. No matter whether you want to go ahead and work through the rest of the courses or not, the Fundamentals courses will give you an idea of what Creo can do, you might discover some new tricks, and you’ll see recent enhancements and current capabilities.
Then, depending on how your LEARN subscription
is set up, you can decide if you want to work toward your Creo Professional Certification
Can you describe what someone’s first course will be like, so maybe the Fundamentals Overview course?
Yes, the Fundamentals Overview is the first course someone will need to take. It’s the first course in the Fundamentals track. We talk about how to navigate the virtual classroom portal. We look at accessing the Student Guide. We talk about how they can generate their own virtual machine link that is in compliance with their organization’s rules, firewalls, etc. In the Fundamentals Overview course, we also talk about some basic terminology and concepts around modeling, assemblies, drawing, analysis, etc.
Can you talk a little more about the virtual machine and why students are using that?
PTC provides students with Creo access through a virtual machine. So, students aren’t launching their own license instance of Creo, they’re using a virtual machine to access the application. This means they’re not required to have a personal license or a license from their employer.
Also, as an instructor, I'm able to access the virtual machine instance and help out whenever it’s needed. So, if a student is stuck on a certain exercise, I can check their progress and offer help or suggestions.
When I am accessing a student’s virtual machine, it works similarly to how it does if someone from the IT department remotely accesses your desktop/laptop. However, in this case, I'm only accessing the Creo portion of the virtual machine. I’m not accessing the student’s desktop contents or any of their personal files.
What do you hope your students take away from their courses?
One of my main goals as an instructor is to make sure that students can fully manage their instance of Creo once they go back to work and even though they no longer have the virtual machine with instructor or course instructions.
I aim to introduce new capabilities, workflows, and commands to students. My main intent is to make students much more comfortable with Creo than when they came into the course.
At the end of each course, I also share my email address with students, not just a survey link. I invite students to follow up with me if they have any additional questions or encounter any challenges after the course.
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