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UTA FabLab director attends White House roundtable of makerspace leaders

Nation of Makers

The University of Texas at Arlington is one of just nine universities nationally - and the only university from Texas - represented recently during a gathering of nearly 200 makerspace leaders at the White House.

The White House invited individuals representing makerspaces from across the country for dialog meant to empower Americans to become tinkerers, inventors, and entrepreneurs.

Katie Musick Peery, director of the UTA Libraries’ FabLab, traveled to the nation’s capital Aug. 24 for the “Nation of Makers” meeting sponsored by the Office of Science and Technology Policy. The event focused on leaders who organize makerspace events across the U.S.

Makerspace is defined as a community-operated work space where people with common interests in computers, machines, technology, science, digital art and other areas, meet, socialize and collaborate on projects. Fab Labs began as an outreach project from the Center for Bits and Atoms at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. UTA’s FabLab, located in the UTA Central Library, is the first MIT-affiliated FabLab at a university in Texas.

Discussions addressed legal structures for nonprofit organizations, methods for measuring benefits to the community, ways to cope with burnout, devices for maintaining diversity and inclusion, and plans for developing mentorships within organizations and other issues.

To learn more, visit the UTA News Center.