Last July, with the assistance of government funding, Gachon University completed the construction of the Gachon Makerspace, a space covering 1,178m2, on the third basement floor in the Vision Tower. It also conducted an opening ceremony. Makerspace is a place for developers and makers where you can create products or tools, using your own ideas. The Gachon Makerspace has been working steadily, having online seminars, even though it is now only partially operating due to COVID-19. We expect more from Gachon Makerspace in the future. What are some things we should know before using the Makerspace?
What is The Gachon Makerspace?
The Gachon Makerspace plays a key role in supporting start-ups and developers in bio-healthcare fields. It is running programs specialized in bio-health that includes prototype development and marketing support. The Gachon Makerspace is not a general lab, but a specialized lab which supports advanced creative activities of professional makers and connects general labs in the region to support startup infrastructure. The Gachon Makerspace has 60 kinds of state-of-the-art devices in 19 specialized spaces, including medical devices for the bio and health sector, quality certification production facilities for prototype development (GMP), metal·bio 3D printers, and electronic test equipment. Also, it is providing consulting sessions for start-ups, so it is a great chance for those people who are about to graduate and want to start a business.
Information for using The Gachon Makerspace
Then, what do we need to prepare to use this state-of-the-art equipment? In fact, there’s not much for us to prepare. First of all, we do not need to make an appointment to use the makerspace. If it’s work that only takes a day, then simply visit the makerspace and say you want to use it. You can use the makerspace without reservation right away. However, there’s a limit of 30 people per hour, so if it’s too crowded, you might have to wait a short time. On the other hand, if your work takes days because it is a large project or start-up, you and the makerspace center need to talk it over and set the schedule.
The Gachon Makerspace runs similar working hours to that of the university (from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.). It can sometimes be used until 9 or 10 p.m. since a center manager often stays there during the working hours to manage the overtime users. It depends on the situation. So, students who wish to use it in the evening are recommended to check and make a request. Also, cost is not a big problem here. The Gachon Makerspace does not require any admission fee, and if the individual pays for the materials needed for the machines, almost every machine except the expensive ones can be used for free. These expendable supplies can be prepared by individuals or purchased at the makerspace. Some expensive machines including 3D printer charges couples of thousand won per hour.
Actually, the Gachon Makerspace supports Gachon University students to the point where it can be considered almost free of charge as long as the budget allows it. Also, the makerspace opens some first-come, first-served classes from time to time like developing black and white films or making a cutting board so that students can experience various activities for free. Since it is an opportunity to join these kinds of activities that are difficult to experience normally, I especially recommend this to all those students who are interested in bio-health fields.
For Liberal Arts Students
Currently, the majority of students who use the makerspace are majoring in science or engineering. This is because these departments need to use the makerspace for the p-semester or other projects. While most science and engineering students get the right information from their department, it is difficult to use the makerspace for the students who do not know much about it, like the students majoring in liberal arts or some other majors. For these students, Makerspace has a dedicated teacher who helps provide tutorials and teaches how to use the machines if more than 5 students apply for it. It only takes 30 to 40 minutes, so I highly recommend you to try it with your friends sometime later.
The Gachon Makerspace is the only space in the metropolitan area that supports developers in the bio-health fields, and one of the four universities with a specialized lab (KU, KNU, CNU, GU). This is clearly a huge distinction between other schools and Gachon University. Gachon University keeps trying to become a better university and a better place. As a Gachon University student, we should consider The Gachon Makerspace as one of the various benefits that our school offers to us and we should use it more actively with our passion and interest. Also, I encourage all of you to become the well-rounded Gachon University students by using The Gachon Makerspace as a springboard to find interest in bio-health fields and preparing the fourth industrial revolution in advance.
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