The Community College of Allegheny County, or CCAC, and the ARM Institute last week announced that the Southwestern Pennsylvania Region's Build Back Better initiative is funding a makerspace. The U.S. Economic Development Administration awarded the educational program through the initiative.
“Community colleges are engines of regional economic development,” stated Dr. Justin Starr, endowed professor for advanced technologies at CCAC, in a release.
“We are committed to providing affordable opportunities for upskilling, training, and pathways to family-sustaining wages,” he added. “The funding of the new Entrepreneurial Labs & Makerspace will enable us to build on our existing capabilities and support a greater number of organizations and individuals,”
CCAC is one of four funded regional makerspaces, along with Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Penn State New Kensington, and Westmoreland County Community College.
New CCAC makerspace to provide access to automation
Located at CCAC West Hills Center and scheduled to open this summer, the new CCAC Entrepreneurial Labs & Makerspace is intended to provide the college community and regional businesses with access to advanced manufacturing, robotics, and automation equipment. The space will contain a variety of machining equipment, 3D printers, collaborative robots, high-end computer workstations, and soldering stations, said CCAC.
That technology and other resources will allow community members to fabricate prototypes, products for sale, and digital resources at an extremely low cost, the college claimed.
The Entrepreneurial Labs & Makerspace is also designed to provide a secure co-working location and office area for individuals seeking to create or scale innovative business ideas, according to CCAC.
About the ARM Institute
The Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing or ARM Institute said it is a leading Manufacturing Innovation Institute. Since 2017, the institute has worked with its nearly 400 member organizations to catalyze more than 120 robotics and workforce projects to strengthen U.S. manufacturing.
The ARM Institute said it facilitates collaboration among industry, government, and academia to advance systems that address urgent needs in manufacturing. As a nonprofit organization, the institute said it acts as a broker between robotics and manufacturing stakeholders.
Through the grant, the ARM Institute plans to advise the makerspaces and help expand the scope of their services to benefit small and midsized manufacturers and manufacturing entrepreneurs.
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