project-based

METHODOLOGY HELPS RETAIN KNOWLEDGE

STEM_Factory_logo.png

When a community does not have access to technology and the Internet, they fall behind communities that do. Access to technology and technical skills improves social and cultural capital and allows one to achieve mass economic gains in productivity. School kids without access and technical knowledge are more likely to be unable to complete their homework and as a result, suffer from lower grades. Young adults and up are also affected because it affects an individual’s ability to apply for jobs and restricts their access to information.

This is called the digital divide which is defined as, “the gap between those who have access to modern information and communications technology and those that do not or have restricted access due to economic, educational, linguistic, and or generational reasons”.  There is also a second level of the digital divide that even those with access exist in. Within this level, there is a divide between producers of Internet content and consumers. This divide exists due to educational disadvantages and lack of free time required to make content.

In order to bridge the Digital Divide, we must go beyond ensuring people have access to the proper resources by improving technological literacy and skills. This can be achieved through increased engagement in content creation, increasing the number of technically trained individuals, changing the attitude around technology, and empowering individuals to get involved in STEM.

 

In 2017, the Multicultural Development Center of Iowa launched an initiative to address the lack of diversity in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics called the STEM Factory, to help fight this issue that overwhelmingly affects communities of color. This program will be accessible to individuals living in Iowa City, Coralville, North Liberty, Cedar Rapids, and surrounding areas and is primarily focused on those who identify as a person of color. MDC Iowa does not discriminate and believes that we cannot achieve real change without fully embracing inclusivity. We welcome all, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, physical or mental disabilities, or any other marginalized status.

IDEA LAB

Collaborate with other creative individuals to conceptualize and create your next big idea.

BE HEARD

Tell your origin story that led to an idea, product or future concept. Who knows, maybe it will inspire someone like you.

SHARE

Share your ideas for a better future, a brighter tomorrow and join a community of innovators and dreamers that will save our world.

The Logic Learning program will help participants gain strong skills in the STEM field that will improve their future, confidence, independence, and give them the power to create what they want to see in the world. Courses within the program will include C+, Python, UI/UX design, web design, mobile app creation, IoT device development, 3D design and printing, and more!

Help change the face of STEM so it more accurately reflects the communities it serves.

 

2021 Event / Class Schedule

  • Extreme Weather Games
    MDC Iowa STEM Factory @ Kingdom Center
    Sep 11, 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM CDT
    MDC Iowa STEM Factory @ Kingdom Center, 611 Southgate Ave, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Learn weather preparedness through video games and activities. Each household with school-age children receives a free Raspberry Pi computer. Free burgers and brats provided by MDC Iowa Board of Directors.
  • TBD
    Python Programming 101 - Part 3
    Iowa City Public Library
    Time is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Learn the basics of Python programming in this hands-on class that walks you through this powerful tool from the beginning. By the end of the class, you will have created your own application and should have the fundamental knowledge to proceed to a level 300 POCC programming class.
  • TBD
    IoT - Build Your Own WiFi Weather Station
    Iowa City Public Library
    Time is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Build your own Internet of Things (IoT) device while learning the basic components of IoT communication, use cases, design considerations, and best practices. Each student will receive a sensor kit including a breadboard, various sensors, and an Arduino board.
  • TBD
    Obtainium Workshop
    Iowa City Public Library
    The date and time for this class is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Learn how to obtain maker supplies from everyday sources. In this class we will cover the basics of sourcing materials and components for typical maker projects. **** Prerequisite(s) **** You must first complete the Soldering 101 class before taking this course.
  • TBD
    Soldering 101
    Iowa City Public Library
    The date and time for this class is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Learn the basics of soldering through a hands-on approach. We will cover the safety aspects of working with a soldering iron as well as the best practices when using this valuable tool. By the end of the class you will have created your own creation that you can take home with you.
  • TBD
    3D Design and Printing - Level 100
    MDC Iowa Learning Center
    Time is TBD
    MDC Iowa Learning Center, 10 E Benton St, Iowa City, Iowa 52240
    Learn the skills to design your own models for 3D printing using Autodesk Fusion 360, a powerful and free software tool for 3D design. At the completion of this class, you should be able to effectively navigate the Fusion 360 interface, create basic shapes, and prepare your model for 3D printing.
  • TBD
    Python Programming 101 - Part 4
    Iowa City Public Library
    Time is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Learn the basics of Python programming in this hands-on class that walks you through this powerful tool from the beginning. By the end of the class, you will have created your own application and should have the fundamental knowledge to proceed to a level 300 POCC programming class.
  • TBD
    Python Programming 101 - Part 2
    Iowa City Public Library
    Time is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Learn the basics of Python programming in this hands-on class that walks you through this powerful tool from the beginning. By the end of the class, you will have created your own application and should have the fundamental knowledge to proceed to a level 300 POCC programming class.
  • TBD
    Python Programming 101 - Part I
    Iowa City Public Library
    Time is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    Learn the basics of Python programming in this hands-on class that walks you through this powerful tool from the beginning. By the end of the class you will have created your own application and should have the fundamental knowledge to proceed to a level 200 POCC programming class.
  • TBD
    Get Your Head In The Cloud
    Iowa City Public Library
    Time is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    What is the cloud? This is one of the most common questions among non-technical people today. In this class we will demystify the cloud and address some of the most common misconceptions. In this class we look at a few providers and will use the cloud for a few personal and professional use cases.
  • TBD
    Cyber Security Basics
    Iowa City Public Library
    The date and time for this class is TBD
    Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240, USA
    In case you haven't noticed, the world (wide web) has become a scary place to exist. By simply using the Internet, you are exposing yourself to privacy threats and potentially harmful programs that could steal your identity or use your computer to commit a cyber crime.
  • TBD
    Reverse Engineering
    Location is TBD
    The date and time for this class is TBD
    Location is TBD
    In this class we pick a common household item, product or process and we investigate what makes it work and how we can recreate it for our own purposes.