Niagara College launches “Makerspace” exploratory digital lab aimed at inspiring innovation

Niagara College


The library at Niagara College is continuing to evolve with the times.

The ncLibraries and Learning Commons has added another list to its roster of services, and this one goes beyond the traditional thought of what a library may offer. On Jan. 25, ncLibraries celebrated the launch of its new Exploratory Digital Media Lab and Makerspace at the Niagara-on-the-Lake campus, offering the college community access to software and equipment for filming videos, recording audio, editing videos, designing graphics, and creating prototypes with a 3D scanner and 3D printer.

“Libraries have changed so much over the years and are no longer about books anymore,” said library technician Jaclyn Chambers-Page. “We are a space that encourages innovation and creation. We want to inspire.”

The concept for the space, which was formerly used as a training room, was sparked in 2015. It went from idea to reality over the last three months, with brand-new technology installed, including a green screen for photography and filming, editing stations and the 3D printing and scanning area. Equipment, ranging from cameras to camcorders to recording equipment and more, is available to students and staff to use for free. Blocks of time can be reserved to utilize the space in two-hour periods.

“The equipment will not just augment what the different programs have, we want it to be there for anyone to explore and to try different things,” said Chambers-Page, who describes the lab as a place to cultivate an atmosphere of entrepreneurial thinking on campus. “Think it, design it, 3D print it.”

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