La Grande, Ore. – Eastern Oregon University will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the launch of the Greater Oregon STEM Hub’s (GO STEM) new Mobile Maker Lab (MML). The MML is a classroom on wheels, with hands-on STEM learning activities, a career-connected learning curriculum, and an open concept of tinkering with STEM-related tools and materials. The Mobile Maker Lab was created with the mission of making STEM education accessible to all students across Eastern Oregon, no matter how remote their location.
To commence this momentous launching event, the University will hold a community open house to tour the Mobile Maker Lab from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m., and will finish with a celebratory mixer at 4 p.m. This three-part event will take place on January 25 at EOU’s Loso Hall Lobby.
“Our goal for this effort is to support our communities through STEM resources and learning as well as to strengthen our wider Eastern Oregon community.” Stefanie Holloway, Program Director of GO STEM said.
Beginning in 2023, the Mobile Maker Lab will be traveling to deliver in-person STEM lessons and hands-on activities to schools across the GO STEM region, encompassing seven rural counties of Eastern Oregon: Harney, Umatilla, Grant, Morrow, Baker, Union, and Wallowa counties. It is outfitted with career-connected and STEM learning resources, including tools and materials for a variety of programs and curricula.
This K-12 and community-focused curriculum will include concepts such as renewable energy, robotics, coding, placed-based science, hands-on building, and crafting, as well as other career-focused projects that can accommodate different grade levels’ learning and diverse schools’ interests and needs.
“The Mobile Maker Lab will be a game changer for the way that Eastern Oregon students receive STEM education. Nothing else like this project exists in Oregon!” David Melville, Executive Director of GO STEM said.
The interior of the Mobile Maker Lab has been designed and painted by students, is ADA accessible, and equipped with shelving to hold curricular materials and supplies. A major focus of the MML build was to ensure that learning can happen anywhere, so a solar array, battery bank, and energy-saving devices have been installed to make the classroom completely off-grid.
Additionally, the MML will also have a built-in electric car charging port to power the GO STEM support electric vehicle and satellite internet. The Mobile Maker Lab trailer will be pulled by a van that has been outfitted with STEM materials, innovative learning supplies, and all of the tools that K-12 learners will need to travel across the vast rural GO STEM region.
For more information on GO STEM visit go-stem.org/