Back in my day
(old lady voice) I had to go to Texas A&M University and take shop classes to learn how to use power tools, laser cutters, 3D printers and more. If you wanted to learn business you take classes from the Mays Business School or get a part-time job learning the business side of things. What if I told you that locally we have middle school kids learning all these things inside one building… would you believe me?
Mike Cobb, Head of All Saints Episcopal School, is the master mind behind the Center of Innovation. You know when you meet someone that has the same interest as you and you feed off their enthusiasm and ideas creating a high speed adrenaline rush… that is how I felt about this project! Mike created 5 spaces within one building creating the Center of Innovation.
I designed the 3D model complete with finishes, equipment, furniture, etc. that Mike had selected. It is one thing being the designer and being in the 3D space but it is utterly fascinating seeing this concept in real life! Lets back up here- how did I become involved and why would Mike invest in 3D renderings if he knew exactly what he wanted?
Great question audience! Mike had drawn out the concept he wanted starting with a plan and a write up of each room (describing the purpose, goals and the equipment housed in each space).
PROCESS: I created a ‘mass model’ of the space so that we could visualize the scaled areas with furniture, etc. This is where we determine if the spaces are large enough for the intent of the room. This step is crucial prior to getting into the fun stage like splashing paint on walls, adding cool furniture, etc. I mean you need to pour your foundation and add your walls before you start putting up your curtains, right? Once this was determined and we were heading in the right direction Mike sent me specs of the exact equipment, tables, chairs, carpet, tile, colors, cladding, etc. that he wanted to see in the model. Tons of great modern materials such as Interlam, Octogonal Carpet tiles by Shaw, Kickin Kiwi VCT Armstrong Flooring to name a few!
Let the designing begin….
Since pictures are so much more cooler
job security for me than words – below are the renderings in comparison with the actual photos. We did an animation prior to the completion of the project for fundraising – check it out below.
Welcome to the idea lab… a collaborative learning experience. An idea wall allows students to brainstorm using the whole surface for writing as well as store printed resources and books. The whimsical tables make it easy for students to collaborate. Did I mention the tables are finished with a custom logo! 50″ televisions surround an interactive projector that can give students global connection abilities.
Welcome to the Fab lab… hands on learning experience beyond the textbook. Students have the opportunity to create and manufacture their concepts into full scale designs. This workshop offers the newest products such as 3d printers, laser cutter, milling machine, vinyl cutter, electronics bench, etc.
Welcome to the Digi lab… students can explore media interest in the fully functioning newsroom and recording studio. Hands on experience provides learning at your fingertips!
Welcome to the E Cafe… students learn first hand how to run a business and is completely run by the students! . The E-cafe has its own storefront, digital retail displays and full service beverage shop to give the students the real-world experience.
Welcome to the Design Studio.. the open collaborative work areas and ‘pitch room’ allow the students to engage with one another and team build. Computer stations and interactive displays are tools provided to drive innovative ideas.
Does this make you want to go back to middle school again? Yea me too! More to come on the the lower school soon!!