The new 1,200-square-foot Innovation Lab in Stony Brook University’s College of Business — filled with 3D printers, green screens, video cameras, computers, vinyl cutters and even a sewing machine — has been featured in Innovate LI.
The Innovation Lab, located in Harriman Hall, Room 210, gives inventive students a place to explore their creative nature while it teaches them necessary skills through a series of workshops on different types of equipment and programs used by inventors. It is a place in which innovators from all over campus can collaborate to develop ideas into actual products.
“We’re trying to create a cross-disciplined facility where ideas generate into prototypes and we spark that entrepreneurial spirit,” said Lab Director David Ecker.
The lab opened in February 2015 and has a student staff of about 10 — 8 of those staffers are women, a good sign for a program seeking to increase female interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics opportunities.
The lab recently hosted a Women in Science and Engineering event, teaching visiting 12- and 13-year-old girls the science behind green screens and 3D printing. The Innovation Lab also participated in June’s Long Island Maker Festival, a celebration of invention and innovation held in nearby Port Jefferson.
The upcoming fall semester workshop schedule includes monthly themes: September will be Create Your Own Brand month, October will focus on app development and November will feature a 3D-printing competition.
Ecker hopes to add some new equipment, including two more 3D printers, a 3D scanner and Leap Motion, a remote controller that gives users advanced ability to manipulate computer functions with simple hand motions.
And possibly the best news for students using the Innovation Lab: Ecker is close to finalizing an official agreement stating that new devices and technologies created there belong to the students designing them, not to the University.
“We want students to own their own IP,” said Ecker. “We’re trying to encourage an entrepreneurial nature, so we want to specifically say ‘hey, we’re not trying to take your idea. Just go develop something great.’”
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