Vector Space, a new nonprofit in Lynchburg, Virginia, has already made great strides in developing a coworking makerspace since it started less than a year ago. Its mission is to drive a well-rounded educational opportunity for learners – of all ages and abilities – in an effort to promote STEAM. Based on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education, STEAM includes an important piece in encouraging innovation: the arts.
Lynchburg has a handful of amazing coworking spaces for businesses and freelancers, however Vector Space is one of the first traditional “makerspaces,” which are growing in popularity across the nation.
The non-profit has already attracted makers from local businesses and schools alike, and they’ve been able to produce some fascinating work.
Earlier this year, for example, a group of engineers from AREVA put their heads together to solve an interesting problem: How would we launch a water balloon into space?
And, they did just that. With a GPS tracker, measurement devices, geiger readers, pressure readers and a range of sophisticated materials, the team was able to launch a large water balloon capsule into space.
Meanwhile, a group of six highschool students from E.C. Glass worked hard to develop multicopter drones with video cameras. The project took place at the Academy of Fine Arts in downtown Lynchburg. The students flew the drone over Lynchburg and captured footage of the city. Here are some of the students and their final product:
The Future of Vector Space:
The nonprofit anticipates signing a lease on a space in 2016. The space will be at least 5,000 square feet, and will combine two key areas: a workshop and an artistic space. The workshop will include: tools for metal and woodworking, and a wide range of materials. The artistic space, on the other hand, will provide arts and crafts materials and a computer lab where makers can learn, brainstorm, engineer and create.