League Article Highlights CCC Maker Impact

The League for Innovation in the Community College published an article sharing the results of the CCC Maker initiative in the Innovation Showcase on January 2, 2019.

College Makerspaces Develop Innovation Ready Graduates

“To prepare students for meaningful work, California Community Colleges (CCC) have invested $17M over three years in the CCC Maker initiative to facilitate a network of 24 college makerspace communities. What’s at stake is the untapped potential of the 2.1 million students in the largest and most diverse system of higher education in the country, according to Carol Pepper-Kittredge, CCC Maker Statewide Project Director and Associate Dean of Workforce Innovation at Sierra College. “I believe that makerspaces are transforming education,” said Pepper-Kittredge.

In an educational makerspace, surrounded by innovators encouraging them to explore and create, students have the freedom to become stronger self-directed learners. . . . By experiencing success and failure, the students learn how to iterate and innovate, developing an entrepreneurial mindset that will serve them in 21st century careers.

Funded by the CCC Chancellor’s Office under the Doing What MATTERS for Jobs and the Economyframework, 24 colleges across California have developed makerspaces designed to fit with their distinct ecosystems. The CCC Maker initiative provided a six-month lean startup process for 34 colleges interested in establishing makerspaces and encouraged colleges to build community before outfitting a makerspace. Of those, 24 colleges were funded for two years with CCC Maker grants of $100,000 to $350,000 per year based on the work plans that came out of the startup process.

A community college makerspace can serve as an engine for local economic development, creative placemaking, and community revitalization, commented Stephanie Santoso, Director of Maker Initiatives, US2020; founding Board Member of Nation of Makers; and CCC Maker advisory committee member. According to Santoso,

Because community colleges are accessible to everyone, they play a critical role in lowering the barriers to entry for students of all ages and backgrounds to engage in making and learn valuable skills that empower them to become entrepreneurs, prepare them for the jobs of the future, and solve community-based problems. The CCC Maker Initiative is a wonderful example of how this can take place and can serve as inspiration and [as] a resource for other communities.”

Read the entire League article: College Makerspaces Develop Innovation Ready Graduates  or the attached pdf of the January 2, 2019 League for Innovation in the Community College – College Makerspaces Develop Innovation Ready Graduates.

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