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UMass Boston’s New MakerSpace


One of MakerSpace’s MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D printers.

Thanks to the hard work of Apurva Mehta and Helenmary Hotz, assisted by Michelle McIntyre and John Mazzarella, the University of Massachusetts Boston has officially opened its 3D printing space, MakerSpace. Two open houses marked the occasion on Wednesday, Oct. 12 and Thursday, Oct. 13. These open houses featured demonstrations and training session for the public. Open to all UMass Boston students, faculty, and staff members, the open houses were hosted from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A lot has changed since the last announcement concerning the project’s progress in the lab. Hotz and Mehta, the leaders of this project, have added more supplies to the lab since its last announcement. They have obtained two new high-end MakerBot printers, cartridges for the 3D printers, and a sign for the lab.

There has also been a movement to get more new people involved in the project, which includes hiring students to work at the lab. McIntyre was appointed to recruitment, while Mazzarella was appointed to marketing. The team also recruited Dr. Filip Cuckov, Assistant Professor of Computer Engineering and Director of the Cyber-Physical Systems Research Laboratory, to act as their advisor.

“Once the committee was put together, it has exponentially grown,” stated Hotz on their constant progress with the lab. Since their last announcement, the team has communicated with different departments across the UMass Boston system, from science to art to business. McIntyre, who has worked as an Instructional Designer for eLearning at UMass Boston, has contacted different faculty members about the lab, stating that the program can “help faculty create activities that are innovative, interactive, and technological” and could “bring the curriculum to the next level.”

The team also had faculty members bring classes to the lab, where they went through a minor training process. There was positive feedback from the students. Other faculty member will be bringing their classes over to learn about the process and create objects for the class. The team has talked to several different faculty members to see how the lab can be integrated with their lesson plans.

The team’s other plan is to create a community at UMass Boston where students can get their “hands on some new technology without the worry of jeopardizing failing grades,” and to have a place where faculty, staff, and students from all different disciplines can come together to create, collaborate, and learn about the different and beneficial ways 3D printing can be used.
For more questions and information visit MakerSpace.umb.edu.