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Today marked the official grand opening of TechShop‘s latest member-based workshop location, in Chandler, Ariz.. The shop was created in partnership with Arizona State University’s Chandler Innovation Center, TechShop’s first academic partnership, and features over $1 million worth of machines, tools, and equipment. The location also has a series of grand opening events scheduled for tomorrow, January 18.

From their press release:

“ASU’s partnership with TechShop demonstrates our commitment to expanding entrepreneurship and innovation opportunities for our students and the community,” said Dr. Michael M. Crow, ASU President. “This makerspace will greatly benefit Chandler and the entire East Valley.”

ASU’s College of Technology and Innovation (CTI) will offer memberships to students who are taking classes at the ASU Chandler Innovation Center, with discounted memberships available for other faculty and students. Anyone can become a member of TechShop Chandler. A list of membership offers for Chandler can be found online.

“This is a first-of-its-kind opportunity in the nation for college students,” said Mitzi Montoya, Dean of ASU’s College of Technology and Innovation. “Beyond access to TechShop’s state-of-the-art tools, ASU students have a new community of entrepreneurs and inventors to collaborate with in the East Valley.”

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MAKE community member and Maker Mom Julie Hudy was at the new location today and shared some thoughts with us:

Today in Chandler, Ariz., has been proclaimed Maker Movement Day. Why you ask? Because a new TechShop has just opened in Chandler!

If you haven’t experienced a TechShop before, you can leave a bit overwhelmed. Me not being a huge maker, I was very overwhelmed. But looking into the eyes of everyone there, it was just plain magical. Whatever you want to make, this is the place to be.

Listening to the opening speeches was very interesting and fun. I have to say that the speech that left an impression on me most was by the cofounder of Techshop, Jim Newton. He started his speech by saying that TechShop was originally started for selfish reasons: he wanted it for himself. Then he found that others wanted the same thing, so he has now shared his idea with eight other locations. That really hit home to me because that is the essence of the Maker Movement. You have an idea, make it, and share!

At the new TechShop, everywhere you looked there were tools: 3D printers, sewing machines, lathes, CNC machines, welding tools, you name it. If you have an idea, you can come to this “playground,” if you will, and make your dreams come true.

Chandler is a very lucky community to have such an amazing shop, and hopefully the TechShop can help open more eyes to the wonderful world of making.

Oh, and I almost forgot the coolest thing: the ribbon cutting wasn’t any ordinary ribbon cutting. They used a torch to cut the TechShop sign/ribbon!

Goli Mohammadi

I’m a word nerd who loves to geek out on how emerging technology affects the lexicon. When not fawning over perfect word choices, I can be found on the nearest mountain, looking for untouched powder fields and ideal alpine lakes.

I was an editor for the first 40 volumes of MAKE. The maker movement provides me with endless inspiration, and I love shining light on the incredible makers in our community. Covering art is my passion — after all, art is the first thing most of us ever made.

Contact me at snowgoli (at) gmail (dot) com.


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