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Aspiring 15-year-old digital designer from Ukraine excels at Arts University Plymouth

15 year-old student Mykhailo has successfully achieved an accreditation in the computer aided design (CAD) software, Autodesk Fusion 360, with the support of Arts University Plymouth’s Smart Citizens Programme and Fab Lab Plymouth.
Student Mykhailo in Fab Lab Plymouth at Arts University Plymouth.

15 year-old Mykhailo in Fab Lab Plymouth

Mykhailo was born and raised in the small Ukrainian town of Kamianske, but was forced to leave his home due to the war in Ukraine. Mykhailo now lives in Plymouth with his mother, who said: “We have been sheltered by a very wonderful family in your beautiful country.”

Mykhailo has always had a passion for digital design, and began exploring the world of 3D modelling using Autodesk Fusion 360 from the age of ten. He has since taken part in numerous competitions and has been recognised for his advanced modelling skills.

Mykhailo said: “I was the winner and prize-winner of many competitions in the category of 3D modelling using CAD. I also took part in the all-Ukrainian competition for the defence of research works of students who are members of the Small Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, and won first place in the second stage.”

Mykhailo using Autodesk Fusion 360 Image credit Smart Citizens Programme

Mykhailo in Fab Lab Plymouth using Autodesk Fusion 360

Looking to further expand his skills, Mykhailo discovered the Smart Citizens Programme’s free ‘Autodesk Fusion 360 Certified User Training’ at Arts University Plymouth. This three-day intensive course, held in our state-of-the-art Fab Lab, supported participants to grow their skills in the core design principles of Fusion 360. Demonstrating the versatility of CAD, the Smart Citizens’ Fusion 360 courses have supported around 40 local businesses, people and students working across a diverse range of sectors including; manufacturing, education, science, creative and cultural.

Mykhailo said: “I really enjoyed the teaching style, and the tutors were very friendly and attentive. During the training, I learned some new features of the programme that I did not know before.”

Participants had the option to take the Autodesk Fusion 360 Certified user exam at the end of the training, to gain a formal accreditation and demonstrate their skills at an industry entry-level. Mykhailo passed the exam with flying colours, adding the ‘Certified User’ accreditation to his already impressive list of achievements, which include two other Autodesk CAD accreditations that he gained whilst studying in Ukraine.

A previous Fusion 360 model made by Mykhailo Image credit Mykhailo

A previous Fusion 360 model made by Mykhailo

Ben Mundy, Fab Lab Plymouth Manager and course leader, said: “During the Autodesk Fusion 360 training, Mykhailo demonstrated that his skills with the 3D design software were of a level that was advanced for someone of his age. English is not Mykhailo's first language, so the fact he completed the course and then passed the formal exam despite this language barrier was really very impressive. It was a pleasure to have Mykhailo join the course, and we are happy to have supported him on his CAD journey.”

Following the training, Mykhailo is keen to continue developing his knowledge and is excited for the future. Mykhailo said: “I would like to continue studying 3D modelling to make it my profession. After school, I dream of graduating from university having studied three-dimensional modelling and related subjects.”

The Smart Citizens Programme has been supported by The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, who fund the Cultural Development Fund, which is administered by Arts Council England.