White City Makers Challenge
Imperial College London has pioneered a new form of outreach at White City, aimed at inspiring teenagers from disadvantaged backgrounds to experience and interact with science through their own creativity. The Makerspace Challenge Program offers young people aged 14-18 from one of London’s most disadvantaged urban communities the opportunity to engage in a creative, innovative and entrepreneurial program designed to build practical and soft skills by taking an idea to working prototype, and potentially beyond.
Creating tech opportunities for young people
The Makerspace builds on decades of Imperial’s more traditional STEM outreach, aimed at inspiring students regardless of background to consider STEM subjects at university. The program is based in White City, where ICL has established their new biomedical campus, and is situated in the larger “Invention Rooms” center which also houses ICL’s advanced hackspace and a community engagement space. Participants develop a wide range of vocational technical skills using a variety of tools and equipment including traditional as well as cutting edge technology, such as 3D printers, laser cutters and scanners. In addition, they receive practical business skills training from the Imperial Business School on communication and negotiation, planning, financial management, marketing and sales.