UNT MindSpark

Maker Life Stories: University of Texas at Arlington FabLab

May 10, 2021

The University of Texas at Arlington FabLab

 

The maker movement has sparked a need for multidisciplinary centers of creativity across the globe. These creative centers -commonly called makerspaces, come to life with the cumulation of tools and resources that foster making through hands-on learning.

Located in Arlington, Tx the UTA FabLab is a prime example of such creative hubs for students. Here, students can fabricate computer-aided designs (CAD) through 3D printing, cut and etch with CNC machines, work with textiles through sewing and embroidering, and so much more. The UTA FabLab is highlighted as being the first MIT-affiliated Fab Lab in a Texas university and has helped ignite the spread of makerspaces.  

In this podcast series, we will take a deep dive into the world of making and explore the inspiration, drawbacks and success stories of makerspaces in higher education and beyond.

 

Guests:

Morgan Chivers graduated from San Jose State University (2011) with four simultaneously conferred degrees: BA History, BA Global Studies, BFA Photography, BFA Spatial Arts (minors: Anthropology, Music, Religious Studies, German, Environmental Studies). Morgan earned an MFA in Glass/Intermedia (2015) at the University of Texas Arlington, where he is now the FabLab librarian and artist-in-residence, collaborating with faculty to integrate making and digital fabrication into curriculum across a beautifully diverse campus. As an author, Morgan has published about his studio practice, pedagogy, and the innovative work of the UTA FabLab, regularly presenting at conferences nationally and internationally. 

Jeffrey McCulley is the FabLab Coordinator of the UTA FabLab at the University of Texas at Arlington. He graduated from the University of North Texas with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling. While attending grad school, he worked at the UNT makerspace as a student worker and fell in love how makerspaces are uniquely placed to enable people from all backgrounds to come together to learn new things, collaborate on ideas and projects, and use equipment they normally wouldn’t be able to access. Jeffrey now works in the UTA FabLab to coordinate outreach events for community members and supervise student employees while helping to further develop their skill sets and abilities as student leaders.

Katie Musick Peery is the director of the UTA FabLab at the University of Texas at Arlington Libraries. She provides leadership around the development, management, and continuous improvement of the lab.  Katie has published on diversifying makerspace student hiring and best practices for makerspace training to increase the impact and efficacy that makerspaces can have on a college campus.  Her grant work and research are primarily focused on integrating maker literacies into higher education curricula.

 

Host Team: JP Abah and Danielle Da Costa

Sound Production: Steven Sparkman

Producer: Judy Hunter

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