New Jersey Makers Day 2017

Host Lewis Weiss visits the New Jersey Makers Day event at the Hillsdale Public Library

New Jersey Makers Day began in 2015 to enhance community engagement and develop connections among New Jersey residents by collaborating with multi-type libraries, museums, small businesses and others to promote and explore new opportunities for entrepreneurship, innovation and hands-on learning experiences. In 2016, New Jersey Makers Day was expanded to be a two-day event, which allowed sites not able to host events during the weekend (like schools, colleges and universities, manufacturers, local businesses, etc.) to still be able to provide programs, demonstrations and other events for their communities. In 2017, more than 80,000 people, including thousands of middle school students, participated in competitions to develop something from an idea into a real product. Lew Weiss interviewed several of these young people at the event.  It was heartwarming to learn that more than half of the students developed a product idea to help someone else. We have compiled the video for your enjoyment about the activities at Maker’s Day from the Hillsdale Public Library where interviews were conducted at the invitation of Dave Franz.

New Jersey Makers Day was originally organized by Doug Baldwin, Piscataway Public Library; Ralph Bingham, Gloucester County Library System; Mo Donohue, Piscataway Public Library; Dave Franz, Hillsdale Public Library; Kate Jaggers, Piscataway Public Library; James Keehbler, Piscataway Public Library; and Allen McGinley, Piscataway Public Library. The program’s initiation was made possible in particular from the support of LibraryLinkNJ, the New Jersey Library Cooperative.
Additional endorsements and support included ManufactureNJ, the advanced manufacturing talent network established by the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development in 2011, and housed at The New Jersey Institute of Technology, and U.S. Senator Corry Booker’s office including an introduction by the Senator that can be found here.