Luther sophomore Olson to conduct summer research on developing a makerspace on campus

Makerspaces are a location in which people "can gather to create, invent, tinker, explore and discover using a variety of tools and materials," according to author Diana Rendina. Sam Olson, Luther College sophomore of Shoreview, Minnesota, is researching the development of a makerspace on the Luther campus.

Olson, the son of Darren and Elizabeth Olson of Shoreview, Minnesota, is majoring in computer science and mathematics at Luther.

"I have found the ways that a makerspace can be used to foster learning, ideas and innovation to be very interesting," said Olson.

He is working with Lisa Lantz, Luther associate professor of theatre, on his project "The Makerspace as Academic Learning Environment."

Olson and Lantz are interested in the development of a makerspace on Luther's campus, and discovering the many ways that the space can be used in the future education of Luther students.

Makerspaces typically have themes that are determined by the types of tools that can be found within the space. Some makerspaces are primarily used for woodworking and general crafting, while others such as "fab labs" can have 3D printers, laser cutters and other high-tech items available for use.

The pair's collaboration is one of 26 summer student-faculty research projects funded through Luther's College Scholars Program and Dean's Office. The Student-Faculty Summer Research projects provide students an opportunity to research topics of interest alongside Luther faculty. This program is one of a wide selection of experiential learning opportunities at Luther intended to deepen the learning process and that are part of Luther's academic core.

The results of the project will be presented at Luther's Student Research Symposium in 2018.

A national liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2,150, Luther offers an academic curriculum that leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree in more than 60 majors and pre-professional programs. For more information about Luther visit the college's website: