On June 11, 2018, the James B. Duke Memorial Library at Johnson C. Smith University was awarded a $100,000 grant to be used for a project called “Making Space for Tech @ An HBCU.” The grant will fund the development of an academic Makerspace that will give all users the opportunity to gain proficiency in design and manufacturing technologies, which are becoming more prevalent in the workforce.
“This resource will allow Johnson C. Smith students to gain a competitive edge when entering the job market,” said Dr. Chantell McDowell, Makerspace project manager and instructional technology coordinator at JCSU’s Duke Memorial Library. “The Makerspace will also provide an arena for research and innovation, which we believe will lead to an increase in faculty and student-based research campus-wide, and more effective research.”
This program was supported by grant funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the federal Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (IMLS grant number LS-00-17-0034-17). These federal funds are investments that help libraries deliver relevant and up-to-date services for their communities.
McDowell said she believes a Makerspace at Johnson C. Smith University will influence the integration of the “maker” culture in liberal arts, business, arts the sciences, and technology in innovative, socially conscious ways that empower students to become entrepreneurs and leaders.
The James B. Duke Memorial Library received one of the 39 competitive grants for fiscal year 2017-2018 awarded to North Carolina libraries from this year’s federal allotment of $4,428,172. The LSTA grant program administered by the State Library of North Carolina funds library projects across the state that advance literacy and lifelong learning, expand access to library resources and expertise, promote partnerships and collaboration, and digitize materials important to the cultural heritage of North Carolina.