February 20, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Big Cash Prizes for Maker Spaces Up for Grabs

The U.S. Department of Education just launched the CTE Makeover Challenge with various cash prizes adding up to $200,000 and additional prizes from sponsors, including Autodesk, Dremel, Etsy Manufacturing, Fab Foundation, LEGO Education, littleBits, Maker Ed, MakerBot, ShopBot, and Snap-on Incorporated.


The goal at hand is to come up with a model of a sustainable, affordable, practical, and replicable maker space. First-round entries, consisting of school details and maker space goals, must be submitted by April 1, 2016.

All eligible schools will gain access to the CTE Makeover Boot Camp, a six-week virtual program in maker space design, lesson planning, sustainability strategies, and community engagement. At the completion of the training, second-round submissions will be due. Those must include detailed design plans, budgets, and implementation strategies.

Up to 10 winning schools will each receive $20,000, as well as additional sponsor prizes, to make its model a reality.

The challenge was first announced at the 2015 White House Maker Faire in support of President Barack Obama’s Nation of Makers initiative.

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