Engineering Makerspace & Invention Center
Located on the 2nd floor of Monarch Hall, Room 2117, the Engineering Makerspace & Invention Center is an excellent resource for any student in the Batten College of Engineering & Technology looking to bring their entrepreneurial ideas to life. The Makerspace is a space that is run by a board of students, principally for students, offering a range of capabilities to facilitate design, prototyping, and invention. The space was originally conceived of by former Dean of Engineering Stephanie Adams, and the project has advanced under the current Dean, Ben Stuart. The location in Monarch Hall was acquired in Fall 2019 and work on the space continued throughout the COVID-19 lockdown, leading to the full opening of the Makerspace now in 2021.
Whether you're looking for a place to prototype a product, build and test a class project, or just get some hands-on experience with machines, the Makerspace can help. The space contains a wide range of equipment for working with a variety of materials. Machines include Lathes, Drill Presses, Bandsaws, a CNC Mill, Welding Equipment, a Laser Engraver, and 3D-Printers. All this equipment was purchased with funds from a State ETF grant and generous donations. The space also has access to an Altair software suite which was gifted by a donor. All these are available to students in the Batten College of Engineering & Technology for free. They only need to purchase their own materials, whether it be wood, metal, or 3D printer filament. To ensure that everyone who uses the Makerspace does so safely, there is also a simple qualification process for each machine. To be able to use a piece of equipment, a student must read its safety manual and then work with a designated instructor on the machine to demonstrate that they can use it correctly.
The Makerspace has already been put to good use during the pandemic. Last Halloween, one professor created a chute for the socially distanced distribution of candy to Trick-or-Treaters. Students also contributed to discussions with medical personnel from the Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters (CHKD) about 3D-printed mask designs, which were then printed in the Makerspace. Another student with a disabled arm used the space to design and 3D-print a prosthetic for his own use. Whatever you want to use it for, the maker space is open and ready to help you make your ideas real.