In the Make Space at Lassonde Studios, students are welcome and encouraged to collaborate to turn their dreams into reality. This is made possible with the variety of tools and machines. The Make Space is also home to the Make program, which offers weekly safety training and fun Make It events. While this space is a wonderful resource for students of all majors, it is much more than just a workshop for University of Utah students and the mentors who run it.
“The most important part of the Make program is the overall culture we facilitate,” said Kaila Paullus, the student vice chair of the Make program. “The purpose of this program is to lower the barrier of entry for students of all majors to learn prototyping skills.”
It is really important to have a team that is welcoming and accepting. You want to have good leaders who can help those who come in, but also learn from them as well.
One of the best ways that the students and mentors can learn from each other is with the program’s Make It events. These events are held weekly in the Make Space (see the Lassonde events calendar for details). Here, students can learn everything from banjo making to the fundamentals of an Arduino. The program is open to all U students.
The activities are run by the Make mentors in the Make Space. Some events require students attending to have had safety training prior to the event while others are open without restrictions. The events generally run for an hour unless the event is more work intensive like the banjo making event was. At the start of the event, Make mentors demonstrate the steps to take to create the project. After demonstrations, students are given the opportunity to work on the project themselves.
Make It events are a great way for students to get experience using the tools, but the tool shed is open all the time. Some of the tools include hammers, screwdrivers, soldering irons, wrenches, oscilloscopes, sewing machines and breadboards just to name a few. The Make Space has everything you need to make your dreams a reality!
While the Make program is available to all University of Utah students to work on whatever projects they can dream up, there is an emphasis put on project development. One of the most amazing things about project development is the necessity for a diverse skill set. Many people don’t realize it, but even in engineering one of our greatest tools is the ability to draw from other fields, whether that is learning about insects, fashion design or music production. Having people with these diverse skill sets come in and join the culture is absolutely essential for creating an accepting space in the Make program.
The Make program strives to be a welcoming environment for all majors and all skill sets. Paullus said, “I think what really makes this place special is the overall energy of the atmosphere. Everyone who is on the team is crazy enthusiastic about being here.”
After her experiences last year, Paullus wanted to emphasize the point that the Make program is like one big family. “We’re all students, we’re all in a student leadership position, but above everything else I will treat this program like everyone is in my family.”
So, the next time you’re in Lassonde Studios be sure to stop by the Make Space and enjoy that culture that they strive to create every day. Whether you’re working on a prototype for your company, 3-D printing a part for your engineering class or just making a present for a loved one, the Makespace is there to help you every step of the way.
Learn more about the Make program at lassonde.utah.edu/make.