If you're a fan of innovation, design, and sustainability, you won't want to miss Make48's 2022 city competition in Madison, Wisconsin. This thrilling episode, which you can watch on Make48's YouTube channel, showcases the incredible creativity and problem-solving skills of seven teams competing to address the "Sustainable Mobility" challenge posed by TREK Bicycle at FabLab Stoughton.
TREK Bicycle issued a unique challenge to the teams: find sustainable solutions that benefit both the community and the environment by recycling bicycle waste from parts that would typically end up in landfills. These waste materials included old bike tires, alloy frames, helmets, shoes, and even bicycle packaging. The two-day event brought together contestants who had the opportunity to collaborate with top designers and engineers in the bike industry, guiding them towards the finish line.
What's particularly exciting about this competition is the location – Stoughton High School, the first high school in Wisconsin and the second in the nation to house a FabLab. The FabLab, established between 2012-13 and open to students since the fall of 2013, is a digital makerspace teeming with cutting-edge equipment, enabling students to fabricate nearly anything they can imagine. Approximately 160 high school students per semester use the FabLab to explore, create, learn, mentor, and invent.
Seven teams competed in Madison to represent their hometown at Nationals.
Badgineers: George Quanyou Zhang, Megan Janquart, Kyle Sprecker and Diana Nava
WI Made: Clarissa Anderson, Evan John Zimmerman and Trish Stromme
FIXtures: Alec Hembree, Adam Stapleton and Ashley Modlinski
We Fail Fast: Mark Westlake, Rob D'Agostino, Sam Westlake and Daniel Staelgraeve
UW-Stout MOC: Mike Cropp, Heidi Rabeneck and Jeff Carr
UW-Stout Industrial Design: Lauren Jaunich, Margaret Dechant, Henry LeBlanc and Noah Carson
Stellar Tech Girls: Marina Bloomer, Keerthi Peddinti, Ella Burmania and Nina Chan
These talented teams worked diligently throughout the weekend to represent their hometown at the national level, showcasing their ingenuity and collaboration in the process.
The competition in Madison was not just about the teams; it was also about the support they received. Mentors and Tool Techs played an essential role in guiding the participants. Make48 enlisted help from past participants, sponsors, makers, and creators from the community, including Luke Gelman, Tyler Isaacs, Chris Burns (representing ShopBot Tools), specialists from TREK Bicycle, AprilAire, Alliant Energy, Boyle Fredrickson, Lumafield, Stoughton Trailers, and PBS Wisconsin.
The journey didn't end in Madison. A team from Stoughton FabLab went on to represent the school at the Sixth Season of Make48 Nationals, held in March 2023 at the University of Missouri-Columbia (UMKC) in Kansas City. It's an exciting testament to the program's impact and the potential for innovative solutions to real-world challenges.
To witness the incredible ideas and teamwork in action, be sure to watch the full episode of the Madison competition on Make48's YouTube channel. This episode is a window into the world of sustainability, innovation, and the power of creative collaboration in addressing critical environmental challenges. Don't miss out on this inspiring event! Watch the episode here.