What is a Creative Lab??
The Brevard Library Foundation, a non-profit organization that supports Brevard County Public Libraries, is embarking on an ambitious project to establish a Creative Lab in the former film library area on the ground floor of the Central Brevard Library in Cocoa. The Creative Lab will allow people (especially young people) to learn about and execute creative engineering, electronic, music, video, or computer projects.
At the recent Lead Brevard’s annual Stakeholders Summit, Dr. Robert P. Scaringe, founder and president of Mainstream Engineering, made an impassioned speech about the need to engender interest in engineering and science among our young people. Not enough of our own students are going into these important and lucrative fields, and his firm is struggling to lure engineers from out of State. The Creative Lab will help to foster that interest and development in engineering, electronics, and the technical arts.
The projected space would be designed to be flexible, accommodating classes and projects involving electronics, video and audio production, and engineering design. There would be a sound-treated studio for music recording, with an adjacent sound engineer station. There would be some small rooms with PCs with video, music, animation, and CAD software, where people could work on projects. Finally, a 3-D printer will be located there, and we’ll have classes about how to use it and how to use design software to create three-dimensional objects. This has exciting potential, not only to inspire ideas among the young, but also to be used by inventors and entrepreneurs to create prototypes and actual small parts.
The Lab will be a learning center and users will need some training and oversight. One of the advantages of living in Brevard County is that we have a great depth of talent here to draw from for help. A retired professional sound engineer has already offered to teach classes in sound recording, and the local filmmakers club has offered to teach video production. The Creative Labwill be a true community partnership: funded by donations, supported by the Brevard Library Foundation, and operated by the Brevard County Libraries and community volunteers.
Members of our community have already generously donated a 3-D printer, and much of the other basic equipment needed to supply the lab, but the biggest expense is going to be renovating the space to house the lab. The Brevard Library Foundation, under the guidance of Executive Director Ned Kellar, will be seeking donations to cover the cost of designing and renovating the library’s existing space for the lab. Jack Rood, renowned architect, and Brevard Library Foundation member, is advising the Foundation on the Creative Lab design concept. Our hope, once the initial Lab is up and running successfully, is to establish Creative Labs in other large Brevard County libraries, such as Titusville, Melbourne, DeGroodt, and Satellite Beach.
The Brevard County Libraries Creative Lab will not only allow people of all ages to create and make things using technology, but will also inspire young people to pursue the technical and engineering arts, and help develop local talent for high-tech firms and entrepreneurs. It will be a serious contribution to the future success of Brevard County.
Be a part of Brevard’s Technical Renaissance—support the Brevard Library Foundation’s Creative Lab!
Library Services Director
Brevard Library Foundation
219 Indian River Drive
Cocoa, FL 32922