MAKERSHiP Profile: Jean

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Jean working on the laser cutter

What brought you to the MAKERSHiP Project?

I was attracted to this because it was free training to do something I already like to do. I had been a stay-at-home mom for 20 years but more recently I have worked in manufacturing. My last job was making electric coils for electric motors.

My son sent me a link about free training. I filled out an application and went to the open house the very next day. During my in-person interview I had a lot to talk about because we were both former diesel mechanics! I was in the project and taking classes at TechShop quickly. When I saw TechShop I was like a kid in a candy store. I didn’t even realize that places like this existed.

What classes have you taken?

So far I have taken the 3D printer class and the laser cutter class. I am taking the ShopBot class next so I can complete a project I’m working on.

What have you made? What do you plan to make?

I am working on a project for a former professor of mine at the Art Institute. She was looking for someone to create an installation art project that depicts the migration and breeding paths of the passenger pigeon. It is the 100 year anniversary of the extinction of this bird.

Jean's prototype made on the laser cutter.

Jean’s prototype made on the laser cutter.

I have been prototyping this project on the laser cutter and plan to make my final on the ShopBot. The finished piece will be exhibited at an event in Chicago, but I don’t have the final details yet.

I have also been using the laser cutter to make replacement parts for the board game Booby Trap.

How do you envision using the digital manufacturing skills you have learned through the MAKERSHiP Project in your career?

I have been trying to learn as much as I can and take it all in. There are so many choices here. I’m a curious person and I like trying new things.

I’ve had many jobs but I have never had a career.  I’m open to all possibilities. I see advantages to working for a startup company and for a mature company. I’m excited to see what opportunities come out of this project.

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