Van Ton-Quinlivan, Vice Chancellor of Workforce and Economic Development, CCCCO made two presentations at the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship conference held in Sacramento on October 8-11, 2016. The CCC Maker project is supported by a grant from CCCCO Division of Workforce and Economic Development and fits with the division’s Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy framework.
Van Ton-Quinlivan, Vice Chancellor of Workforce and Economic Development, CCCCO presenting at NACCE in Sacramento 2016
Ton-Quinlivan’s remarks indicated that there has been a nationwide call to grow the maker movement. “Makerspaces enable students to get hands-on experience to design and invent with other makers in fields such as science, technology, engineering, math, and art (STEM/STEAM),” said Ton-Quinlivan.
She indicated that the $17 million InnovationMaker3 grant that is funding the CCC Maker project is targeted at preparing a strong workforce. “As opposed to the traditional instructor-led classroom model where students learn through observation, makerspaces provide students with access to space, support and equipment to physically make things,” said Ton-Quinlivan. “Students get hands-on experience with new tools that they might end up working with once they enter the workforce.”
As the largest community college system in the nation, she anticipates that college makerspaces will prepare the diverse student body for STEM careers where women and minorities are underrepresented. “If we want to grow the STEM/STEAM economy, we need to increase access to education for all diverse populations,” said Ton-Quinlivan. “We also need to provide new educational environments that prepare all students with the skills needed to join an innovative workforce.”