Last month, a new makerspace came to Cornell’s campus to promote a diverse approach to creativity and ideation. mannUfactory – located on the right side of the first floor of Mann Library – offers the Cornell community tools and assistance to bring ideas to reality. When you enter the makerspace, you will find several 3D printers, sewing machines, an industrial printer, and more. Not only will you find tools but also knowledgeable staff willing to help you bring your projects to life.
Although mannUfactory launched on February 1st of this year, the space and its staff have already made a tangible impact on the entrepreneurship ecosystem at Cornell. One of its primary efforts to reaching Cornell entrepreneurs was through bringing a pop-up to the Animal Health Hackathon this year. The makerspace brought 3D printers to the hackathon for students to make tangible representations of their idea.
Beyond hackathons, the makerspace provides Cornell entrepreneurs space and resources to ideate and build before they begin their business plans in Life Changing Labs or eLab. “There was a student here building a board game,” Camille Andrews, an Emerging Literacy Librarian, explained. “Before coming to mannUfactory, she had pieces spread across her dorm room. mannUfactory provided the space she needed to design her game.” In addition to space, students can use programs to build video games, programs, and virtual reality. mannUfactory has Unity, Adobe, Steam, Google Tilt Brush, and more to create digitally. Tangible crafting is also available through button making and knitting. The makerspace staff put together a guide for working in mannUfactory, which can be found here. They hope students will use their facility to ideate before launching their ideas as businesses in eLab. “We will point students to eLab, and eLab will point students to us,” Andrews explained.
Like all new projects, mannUfactory has faced some challenges in launching. Firstly, the makerspace is open on Monday through Thursday from 2pm to 7pm. Camille Andrews recognizes that students are more inclined to come to the space on nights and weekends, so her and her team are exploring the possibilities of hiring more staff to keep the space open later. Right now, students can schedule consultation appointments for help on their projects, and consultation appointments are available beyond mannUfactory’s current hours of operation.
Learn more about mannUfactory by visiting its website. There, you can sign up for upcoming events, including a mending workshop with Cornell Thrift, a design thinking workshop with Camille Andrews, and more!