The intermingling of undergraduate students with grad students, post-docs, faculty, and commercial interests in one innovative facility results in better academic experiences.
Abstract: Makerspaces designed for collaborative learning are appearing on campuses throughout the United States, including at Drexel University. These spaces succeed because they permit students to collaborate, observe, and learn from professors and peers. Unique to the Drexel project is the intermingling of engineering undergraduates, graduate students, post-docs, faculty, and commercial interests in one facility with laboratories, machine-shop equipment, and informal study areas. Facilities that give students great visibility into nearby research, contain areas where they can take breaks without leaving the building, and lend themselves to informal encounters with peers, faculty, and others result in better academic experiences for undergraduates.