IITGN to establish ‘Maker Bhavan’- an academic makerspace to enhance active learning experiences for students

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Gandhinagar: Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar (IITGN) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish ‘Maker Bhavan’ at the Institute. The gift agreement was signed with Dr. Hemant Kanakia, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer at Gemplex Internet, Inc., USA and an alumnus of IIT Bombay, on February 23, 2019 during the Overseas Indian Higher Education Conclave at IITGN. Dr Kanakia has contributed a substantial endowment to support the creation of the Maker Bhavan.

With creation of the ‘Maker Bhavan’ (MB), IITGN has embarked on leading the learning-by-doing approach in engineering education in India, under which people with shared interests will be able to work on projects while sharing ideas and knowledge. It is envisioned as a multidimensional makerspace on campus to foster experiential learning, design thinking, creativity and innovation among students across all disciplines.

Speaking about creation of this unique makerspace at the institute, Prof Sudhir K. Jain, Director, IITGN, said, “Maker Bhavan aims to redefine the traditional divisions between classrooms and lab spaces to ensure that active learning, creativity, and research innovation become an integral part of teaching and learning at IITGN. It will also empower students through highly beneficial interdisciplinary interactions, a core value of IITGN.”

Dr Hemant Kanakia said, “In order to become leaders, students should learn to complement engineering knowledge acquired at IITs with a host of soft skills such as effective communications, group collaboration skills, critical thinking and aptitude for innovation. To this end, Maker Bhavan facilitates interdisciplinary student and faculty interactions, and integrates learning by doing into curriculum courses. The goal is to turn students in to doers, leaders and innovators in whichever field they choose to pursue after graduation.”

‘Maker Bhavan’ will have team work areas, a fabrication area, machine shop, creativity studio, electronics labs, and materials inventory and storage space with the aim of providing the necessary tools, resources, facilities, people, and equipment for both curricular and extracurricular activities. Students and IITGN’s extended community, including faculty, staff, alumni, industry partners, and in the long-term, educational practitioners from other institutions around the country will be able to benefit from the space.