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MakerMinded Student Competition Goes Live in Ohio

Posted on Aug 28, 2017

Online Platform and Competition are Changing the Course of STEM Education and Advanced Manufacturing Learning

Tuesday, August 28, 2017, Columbus, OH—Today, LIFT—Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow, a national ManufacturingUSA institute, in partnership with Battelle, the Ohio STEM Learning Network, the Ohio Manufacturers’ Association, and Tennessee Tech University’s iCube, launched MakerMinded, an online STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) learning and educational activity platform. The MakerMinded campaign helps impassion students about advanced manufacturing and provides them with transformational STEM learning experiences that set them on track towards advanced manufacturing careers.

MakerMinded’s online platform,, will connect Ohio’s middle and high school students to over 150 leading-edge STEM and advanced manufacturing education experiences, while galvanizing participating students and schools around a student-driven, pro-manufacturing campaign and competition. The platform’s goal is to provide students access to the right programs that will encourage and prepare them for further education and careers in advanced manufacturing. 

“Manufacturers across the country fear a widening skills gap, which could result in 2 million jobs going unfilled unless we take action now to prepare today’s students for tomorrow’s jobs,” said Emily DeRocco, director, education and workforce, LIFT.  “MakerMinded shows the magic that happens when we empower young people with the opportunities, inspiration, and tools they need to gain in-demand skills and pursue meaningful careers.”

This year’s goal is to sign on 100 schools across Ohio and award the top performing schools for their engagement in MakerMinded advanced manufacturing programs in May 2018.

“MakerMinded offers an excellent starting point for schools looking to get started with STEM or expand the opportunities they offer students,” said Aimee Kennedy, Senior Vice-President of Education, STEM Learning, and Philanthropy at Battelle. “We’re proud to bring this opportunity to the Ohio STEM Learning Network and all schools interested in showing their students the promise of STEM career.”

“As the state’s largest sector, Ohio manufacturers employ around 700,000 Ohioans with a total payroll of $39 billion,” said Eric Burkland, president, Ohio Manufacturers’ Association.”  “We are proud to stand behind MakerMinded as an initiative that will help companies connect to the future talent they need to grow and ensure that workforce has the skills to excel.” 

How it Works

The platform includes a searchable database of both national and local student programs, including on-line and in-person experiences, from manufacturing facility tours to engineering design challenges to technical skills competitions.  Examples of programs include Learning Blade, a mission-driven online STEM curriculum, robotics competitions, EduFACTOR, and eCYBERMission. As students complete activities and programs, schools receive points and compete against other schools in Ohio.  The competition culminates in a recognition event and prizes for the schools and students accumulating the most points for completing the most activities.

Students and schools interested in joining the MakerMinded campaign can sign up at:

MakerMinded will host a variety of launch events across Ohio to kick off the 2017-2018 campaign.  Information about launch events will be posted at as event details are finalized.

About LIFT – Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow

LIFT is a Detroit-based, public-private partnership committed to the development and deployment of advanced lightweight metal manufacturing technologies, and implementing education and training initiatives to better prepare the workforce today and in the future. LIFT is one of the founding institutes of Manufacturing USA, and is funded in part by the Department of Defense with management through the Office of Naval Research.

About Battelle

Every day, the people of Battelle apply science and technology to solving what matters most. At major technology centers and national laboratories around the world, Battelle conducts research and development, designs and manufactures products, and delivers critical services for government and commercial customers.

Battelle also manages a range of successful projects bringing quality STEM education to students including the Ohio STEM Learning Network, Tennessee STEM Innovation Network, and the national STEMx network.

Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio since its founding in 1929, Battelle serves the national security, health and life sciences, and energy and environmental industries. For more information, visit

For more information contact Katy Delaney at (614) 424-7208 or or T.R. Massey at (614) 424-5544 or

About OMA

The mission of The Ohio Manufacturers’ Association is to protect and grow Ohio manufacturing. Through the OMA, manufacturers and manufacturing stakeholders work directly with members of the Ohio General Assembly, state regulatory agencies, the judiciary community and statewide media with the sole focus of improving business conditions for manufacturers in Ohio.

About iCube

Tennessee Tech University’s iCube is a place where students and faculty Imagine, Inspire, and Innovate. We are a leader in advancing collaborative solutions with extensive experience in public policy marketing campaigns and virtual reality development. To learn more about our center, please visit


Media Contacts

Katy Delaney
Director, Media Relations
Office: 1.614.424.7208

T.R. Massey

Senior Media Specialist
Office: 1.614.424.5544