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Santa Cruz Tech Beat: Cabrillo Fab Lab

The following article, Cabrillo Fab Lab: Building Ideas by Payson McNett, Cabrillo College, Adjunct Faculty, Special to Santa Cruz Tech Beat, was originally published in Santa Cruz Tech Beat on April 13, 2017.

(Photo Above: Santa Cruz Tech Beat and Cabrillo College Fab Lab. A scene from the Cabrillo College Fab Lab. The lab is equipped with state of the art technology to assist students with learning skills for 3D printing and scanning, laser cutting and engraving, vinyl cutting, and CNC router capabilities. Contributed.)

Cabrillo College is participating in the CCC Maker initiative and contributing to the statewide Community College makerspace Community of Practice.

The article begins:

“How the Cabrillo Fab Lab came to be
Payson McNett, adjunct faculty member at Cabrillo College. (Contributed)
When I attended Cabrillo College, I was one of many students who thrived in the art department as a result of the nurturing environment and quality instruction I received in classical techniques. I was a student at two universities and several community colleges in my 11 year pursuit of an MFA degree, and Cabrillo’s fine arts faculty are some of the most talented instructors I have had. They were able to demonstrate their commitment to the community by offering quality art instruction – while working in sub-par studio classrooms.

Digital fabrication
I returned to Cabrillo in 2014 to interview for an adjunct instructor position in the ceramics department. The facilities at the Visual, Applied, and Performing Arts (VAPA) complex were new to me and so was Dr. John Graulty, the Dean of VAPA. During my interview, I demonstrated a technique to apply texture to clay using a laser-cut stencil. This small portion of my presentation sparked Dr. Graulty’s and other committee members’ interest and opened up a new and exciting direction for the Cabrillo Studio Arts Department: digital fabrication.”

Continue reading this article in Santa Cruz Tech Beat.


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Engineer at Sierra College Makerspace Mentors Students

The Placer Sentinel published an article on Peter Chang, Electrical Engineer, who generously shares his expertise with students and community members who have an idea and are trying to figure out a way to make it into a product at Hacker Lab Powered by Sierra College in Rocklin, CA.

peter-chang-show-class-project-dsc04580-lrIn addition to teaching, touring scouts around the makerspace and helping community members create new products, the article explains that:

Sierra College students have been mentored by Chang. According to Carol Pepper-Kittredge, CCC Maker Statewide Project Manager, housed at Sierra College, college makerspaces provide an opportunity for students to work with industry experts to develop career skills. “Peter shows students how to methodically trouble shoot problems just like they’d need to do on the job,” said Pepper-Kittredge. “He has also mentored students on their capstone ‘Mechatronics for Humanity’ projects, helping them think of ways robotics can be used to make a difference in others’ lives. He works through the design and presentation with them. For instance, he helped students use microcontrollers for lighting and make boxes on the laser cutter to house the controls.”

Read the article Sierra College Students’ Imaginations Lit by Engineer at Hacker Lab in the Placer Sentinel.

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Learning by Design: Higher Education Makerspaces

Higher Education Makerspaces, Engaged Students, Hands-On-Skills, Interdisciplinary Connections by Mark Maves and Vincent Wilczynski was published in Learning by Design Spring 2017  pg. 16-19 and mentions the CCC Maker initiative.

The article begins: “The academic makerspace has emerged as a nascent and intriguing tool as higher education explores ways to enhance learning and innovation. It appears to hone critical thinking, develop teaming skills, advance capabilities in the application of knowledge, and foster self-directed leaning. Makerspaces forge new collaborations and interdisciplinary interaction across the campus, enrich the discussion about what ‘hybrid’ learning is, and contribute to the cultivation of a workforce that can work nimbly in an innovation economy.”

In the article, Van Ton-Quinlivan, Vice Chancellor, Workforce and Economic Development, California Community College Chancellor’s Office, provides background on the CCC Maker initiative:

“‘…we need to have a strong STEM/STEAM strategy in order to produce a strong workforce,’ said Van Ton-Quinlivan, vice chancellor of Workforce Development and Economic Development for California Community Colleges. We’re increasing investments in strategies that can build those types of skill sets. So connecting community colleges into the Maker Movement is part of our InnovationMaker portfolio.'”

Read the Higher Education Makerspaces article.




How to Draw Women into the Maker Movement

Elizabeth Dayton, Ph.D. has produced a literature review for the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office Special Populations Collaborative on Drawing Women into the Maker Movement.

According to the paper, surveys show that over 80% of Makers are men, reflecting the same kind of gender imbalance found in most tech companies. This has significant implications for the kinds of ideas and inventions produced in Makerspaces.

This paper reviews the research and provides insight into how California Community College Makerspaces and other Maker communities can take steps to be more inclusive and benefit from a diverse community of Makers.

Topics include ways to address the disparities in the Maker movement:

  • Broaden the definition of Making
  • Offer open-ended, versatile prompts
  • Emphasize the broader benefits of Making
  • Build Maker communities
  • Provide mentors

Learn more at ccc.specialpopulations.org and jspac.org.



Dale Dougherty Encourages Making as Part of College Experience

Dale Dougherty, Founder & CEO of Maker Media, presented “Bringing the Maker Movement to Community Colleges” at NACCE2016: Innovate Now, held in Sacramento in October. He indicated that the Maker Movement is a revival of hands-on learning in a whole new way. His comments included:

  • Maker spaces encourage play and allow participants to become immersed  in what they are doing.
  • Experiences in a maker space give students confidence because they can practice and get better as they develop their abilities.
  • The more students participate, the more they can become their own best critics, improve skills and find out what matters to them.
  • Building community gives students support to come up with ideas, development them and share their solutions with others.
  • Students, who make see themselves as producers, can solve problems and build something that doesn’t exist.

Watch Dale’s presentation from NACCE2016.

NACCE is a member organization of over 300 community colleges representing nearly 2,000 staff. Presidents, educators, administrators and center directors are focused on igniting entrepreneurship in their community and on their campus. NACCE has two main goals:

1. Empower the college to approach the business of leading a community college with an entrepreneurial mindset; and

2. Grow the community college’s role in supporting job creation and entrepreneurs in their local ecosystem.


CCC Maker Milestones

The CCC Maker Initiative is working with 35 California Community Colleges to develop a Community of Practice to explore how to plan, establish and manage inclusive, sustainable makerspaces.

The initiative envisions that faculty will embed making into curriculum, businesses will offer internships, students will develop in-demand STEM/STEAM skills to prepare them for careers and colleges will develop unique makerspaces that reflect their communities.

By sharing experiences as they go through this process, college representatives from around the state will learn from each other. The Technical Assistance Provider and other services providers will be offering webinars and other resources to support the colleges in this journey.

The CCC Makerspace Start-up Packet provides an overview of the anticipated activities over the next few months.

Below are the milestones that colleges will be working on in the first half of 2017.


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Colleges Participating in the CCC Maker Initiative

The following 35 California Community Colleges submitted a letter in mid-January indicating their  Intent to Participate in the CCC Maker Initiative. The group kicked off their participation in CCC Maker Makerspace Start-up at a welcome webinar on January 20. These colleges will be getting seed grants of $40,000 to plan their makerspaces. They will also be eligible to apply for CCC Maker implementation grants in June 2017.

Allan Hancock College
American River College
Butte College
Cabrillo College
Chaffey College
City College of San Francisco
College of Alameda
College of San Mateo
College of the Canyons
Cosumnes River College
Crafton Hills College
Folsom Lake College
Foothill College
Glendale College
Golden West College
Hartnell College
Laney College
MiraCosta College
Moorpark College
Moreno Valley College
Mt. San Antonio College
Mt. San Jacinto College
Norco College
Orange Coast College
Palomar College
Pasadena City College
Riverside City College
Sacramento City College
Saddleback College
San Bernardino Valley College
San Diego City College
Sierra College
West Los Angeles College
Woodland College
Yuba College
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Sierra College Makerspace Featured in Manufacturing Podcast

Joe Hackman of Manufacturing Advocates Podcast visited Hacker Lab Powered by Sierra College this fall and asked about the impact that making has on students. Joe Hackman writes: “learn how innovation in the community college system and maker spaces can help fill middle skill manufacturing jobs.”

Carol Pepper-Kittredge, Statewide Project Manager, CCC Maker, is interviewed. Listen to what students say about the value of a community college makerspace.

Check out: Innovation in Education Sierra College and Hacker Lab EP3

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Intel: MakerHers – Ideas for Inclusive Makerspaces

This Intel report, MakeHers: Engaging Girls and Women in Technology through Making, Creating, and Inventing, can provide use research based information to assist colleges in making makerspaces inclusive and welcoming to all students.

The report describes how the Maker Movement has the potential to change the future for girls and women, a group traditionally underrepresented in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields.

Some of the key findings include:

  • Girls and women makers are more likely than male makers to come to making through multiple pathways including engineering, computer science, arts, and design.
  • Making is already popular with tweens and teens in the U.S., including both girls and boys.
  • Girls and women face constraints to participating in making