Published : Friday, November 3, 2017 | 3:21 PM
Ramona recently celebrated the STEM Department accomplishments with a Grand Opening of a new Makerspace, the Ramona MakerDen, which was partially funded by a generous grant from the Ahmanson Foundation.
Principals and teachers from local partner schools joined to learn more about the potential of this exciting and innovative program and get a feel for the creative spirit of the Ramona community. Mr. Brian Kays, Director of Innovation and Technology Integration, and his team of student NINJAs (Need Information Now, Just Ask) led demonstrations, took guests on site tours, and answered questions about the unique space and how it enhances the STEM curriculum. Senior NINJA Madeline Karam shared “I am lucky to have the opportunity to learn more about technology and engineering at Ramona. It felt great to be educating teachers and principals about our program and showing them projects that they can pass along to their own students.”
A makerspace is a collaborative space where students gather to create, invent, and learn. The Ramona MakerDen has been outfitted with some of the latest programming, prototyping, fabrication, and manufacturing equipment to help students develop their design skills and bring their imaginations to life.
At Ramona, young women can engrave on aluminum, leather, and wood with our ULS 50 Watt laser, fabricate 3D parts in aluminum or steel on a Tormach PCNC machine, rapid prototype an idea on one of four 3D printers, manufacture wearable electronics with arduinos and sewing machines, or even create their own t-shirt line with our professional Roland GX-24 vinyl cutter and Vevor heat press. One of the favorite projects demonstrated at the event was a wood jewelry box created with a laser cutting tool. The capabilities of the MakerDen are rare at the high school level, and Ramona is fortunate that its facilities rival those of many colleges.
Because design thinking builds confidence, creativity, and problem solving skills, Ramona ensures that every student practices the design process by completing design projects in their 9th grade social studies curriculum. Students also develop their leadership skills through serving as NINJAs (Need Information Now, Just Ask) who train their peers to use the equipment and as volunteers in a global network who use 3D printers to create prosthetic hands for children. Students can create independent, entrepreneurial projects as well.
Ramona is a welcoming Catholic college-prep high school for girls in grades 9-12. Ramona graduates face the future with an extraordinary education, a global vision fueled by Catholic values, an independent spirit, confident leadership skills, the support of their Ramona sisters, and the strength of a legacy of more than 128 years of excellence.
Ongoing tours of the Makerspace and the rest of the 19-acre campus will be given during Open House on Saturday, November 18, from noon – 3 p.m. We warmly invite you to visit and meet Ramona for yourself!
Ramona Convent Secondary School, 1701 W. Ramona Rd, Alhambra, CA 91803, (626) 282-4151 or visit www.ramonaconvent.org.