Project Case

June 18, 2019

Student ambassador program to create fan communities for products


Increasing the number of fans for products and heightening awareness through community programs.

The “Fusion 360” cloud modelled CAD/CAM tool is produced by the Autodesk Inc., whose main office is located in the U.S.A. In addition to providing the high-performance functionalities required for 3D modeling, Autodesk is adopting bold measures which allow the program to be used for free by students, teachers, and individual hobbyists for educational purposes.

With the thought of “wanting the younger generation to become more motivated and to gain the ability to use the tools of future eras” in mind, Autodesk is conducting the “Fusion 360 student ambassador program” by appointing student ambassadors to plan and operate several workshop programs themselves. FabCafe organized this student ambassador alongside Autodesk.

Project Outline:

  • Support details
    • Total planning and designing of the ambassador program
    • Provision of a community and a location (FabCafe and FabCafe MTRL)
    • Event support for student management
  • Approach
    • Nomination of student ambassador candidates utilizing the FabCafe network
    • A workshop held at FabCafe MTRL
    • Coaching aimed towards implementing workshops by student ambassadors
    • Reports on the website for each activity

Fusion 360 is a piece of sophisticated, cloud-based 3D CAD software produced by Autodesk. Usually, 3D CAD software can be priced from hundreds of thousands to millions of yen, but Fusion 360 can be used for only several thousand yen a month. Furthermore, it can be used for not-for-profit or hobby purposes for free. For these reasons, its use among 3D modelers and creators is widening dramatically.

Joint development with student communities who are interested in planning or design. Student ambassadors widening their communities personally.

The strengths of FabCafe are its open location and the diverse community of people who work there. In particular, we refer to the latter as “micro communities”. FabCafe has created many of these communities in fields of interest such as fashion and technology. The assets of FabCafe are the ability to convey value, and to grow together with those communities.

The whole program for this project has been planned for students with an interest in design, the goal of which is to promote awareness and utilization of Fusion 360 to these students.

As seen in the chart below, the knowledge and PR skills held by FabCafe community managers is transmitted to the students, the goal of which being for the students to lead their own workshops and broaden their own communities.

The student ambassadors were instructed on the planning, implementation, publicizing, etc., of the community management system.

FabCafe conducted extensive community support to the student ambassadors including the formulation of plans and how they could teach themselves at their own universities. For most of the students, this was their first experience taking the leading role and teaching in a workshop. Before conducting workshops at each of their Universities, first they attained experience by running the “Design a Postcard Using Fusion 360” workshop as student ambassadors, with FabCafe used as a stage.

Following that, the ambassadors held and planned workshops themselves at each of their own universities, based upon what they had learned.

These were conducted individually at each University, and were based on their own fields of expertise. One workshop was held at the Nihon University College of Art which was focused on design, and a second was held at Kogakuin University, which focused on robots.

Workshop for Beginning Modelers Designing Postcards in Fusion360 at FabCafe


Event held at Chiba University Design Course×Fusion360

Event held at the Nihon University Art Department

Holding a results presentation to share what the student ambassadors learned. Connecting this knowledge to the second stage of the ambassador program.

To conclude the community activities at each of the universities, the student ambassadors held a presentation to share what they had learned from the program. While the students took the initiative in expanding their communities, they shared what they learned alongside their classmates. This program was held over two periods.

Voices of Participating Students

Sora Okamoto

Keio University, Environment and Information Studies, 4th Year

I was just a beginner with Fusion 360, but from the start, I had many opportunities to teach craftsmanship in the areas of digital fabrication, machinery, and 3D modeling. I thought that the workshop design and working to popularize Fusion 360 would suit me greatly. I received a lot of encouragement from being able to work with all the people from different universities and all their different points of view. I was able to newly master Fusion 360 and had the full ambassador experience!

Kao Murakami

Nihon University Fine Arts Department, Studying Design, 3rd Year

I had a very good experience meeting and cooperating with students from other universities and being able to hold various events. There were a lot of things I was able to do as a college student. Also, I was able to absorb a lot of knowledge which I did not previously have, allowing me to greatly increase my modeling abilities. I have a lot of great memories of this summer from this project.

Yusuke Mori

Kogakuin University Mechanical Systems Engineering Department, 4th Year

I learned the importance of taking up challenges from these activities. While I was planning events with students from other fields, I was anxious about what I could do myself. But as we acted together, our mutual sharing of skills and knowledge served as a good source of encouragement. I deepened my mutual exchange with the junior ambassadors and I hope that they will leverage this experience in their own craftsmanship journey.

Daisuke Kakiki

Chiba University Graduate Engineering Research Department, Design Science Masters Degree Program, 1st Year

There were a lot of times when I learned something from someone and thought, “You can really use it like that?!” I learned so many different ways to use Fusion 360 from the various teachers. I had great results from meeting lots of awesome colleagues through Fusion 360.


  • FabCafe Global Editorial Team

    This articles is edited by FabCafe Global.

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    This articles is edited by FabCafe Global.

    Please feel free to share your thoughts and opinions on this article with us.
    Contact us

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