On June 9, Dollar General presented a $2,900 check to help fund Alachua Branch's new Summer Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM) Power program. This program was developed to help teens increase their experience in collaborative work, project organization and problem solving. The grant will fund instructional materials for the program and the purchase of a 3D printer that will be used at one of the three digital literacy stations to engage students in creative and inventive learning all summer.
Alachua Branch Librarian Linda Dean applied for the grant. Her grant proposal detailed how additional funding could transform Alachua Branch’s meeting room into a Makerspace for local youth to create various computer aided objects, work with robotic kits and learn to use a 3D printer to master advanced levels of computer aided design. Both staff and students at Santa Fe High School and Mebane Middle School were impressed and inspired when Dean presented the program in May. They were eager to learn of the possible opportunity to have free access to a 3D printer, instruction and materials at the Alachua Branch Library this summer.
Teens are invited to come see the space transform and start planning their inventive creations as the program starts June 11 and continues every Thursday from 3 to 5 p.m. through August 20.