This iD Tech Camps alum discovered 3D printing. Now there's no stopping him.
In 2011, Ritik attended the very first TEDxKids@Brussels and learned about the Maker Movement. The one thing that really captured his imagination was 3D Printing and 3D Modeling.
After a few months of exploring 3D Printing on 3DTin, Ritik’s excitement grew enough that his father bought him his first 3D printer, a Makerbot Cupcake. They assembled it together, and suddenly Ritik was printing solutions for everything: a missing heater-knob at school, keychains to open soda cans, and more, with the ultimate goal of printing his very own pair of glasses. He then moved his design skills to TinkerCAD.
“I started giving workshops and talks to get other kids fascinated,” Ritik says. “I learned more every time I gave a workshop.”
Initially, Ritik’s father ran the workshops and Ritik helped out, but gradually that structure shifted. Now Ritik runs the workshops, and his father helps him.
Kids aren’t the only ones who benefit from Ritik’s talks.
“I feel most proud of the talk I gave in TEDxKids@Vilnius because it was the first one I gave to an audience of adults, and I felt confident that I had something to say even adults could learn from,” Ritik says.
As if broadening the minds of adults and his peers wasn’t enough, Ritik also has an eye for philanthropy. He met Koen Van Pottelbergh, founder and chairman of Eyes For the World, a nonprofit that provides self-adjusting glasses for adults and children in underprivileged areas. They started talking about what they could do together.
“I think we should give back to our communities. I’ve been passionate about eyewear since I was ten, and I was very picky about choosing my frames,” Ritik says. “Then I met Koen and realized that children in third world countries need glasses too but can’t afford them or get their hands on them. So I wanted to do something to help them.
“We got the idea to start a company that makes customized glasses for people to buy, and then one pair gets donated to a child in a third world country by Eyes For the World.”
Ritik has since designed those custom frames he wanted. “I designed them from scratch, without any help,” he says with pride.
While Ritik has had a passion for technology from a young age, a passion that was focused by the TEDxKids Maker Movement, he says attending iD Tech Camps “opened a whole other range of possibilities.”
“I was able to design more complex and interesting things,” he says. “The iD Tech Camps held at Stanford helped me raise my skills to a higher level.”
Ritik explored Robotics with VEX, as well as 3D Design with Maya.
“I wanted to learn a new app to design in 3D, so I looked at Autodesk. I learned Maya at iD Tech and was able to use the skills I built to transition to Fusion 360. The Maya course gave me the confidence to grow further and explore new programs. There weren’t any boundaries anymore.”
Breaking boundaries is something at which Ritik excels. In addition to delving into 3D printing, he finds other technologies incredibly fascinating.
“At this moment I’m looking at fields where 3D printing can have a great impact, like Space and Synthetic Biology,” Ritik says. “I’m helping out at Startup Weekends and Hackathons in a wide range of fields. The world is full of exciting technologies.”
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