What is the FASTEnER Lab?
The FASTEnER Lab is an interdisciplinary fabrication space, part of the Department of Contemporary Art and Theater at Shepherd University. We focus on the intersection of art, engineering, science, technology and education. Our goal is to give people the tools and resources to bring amazing things to life!
Is it only for university students?
The lab is open to all Shepherd University students, faculty and staff who have taken a training course in the equipment they would like to use. Once you have been trained, you may use the lab for research and class projects. Members of the community can take a class or workshop with us through Shepherd University’s Lifelong Learning program. More on workshops can be found here. More on Lifelong Learning classes can be found here.
When are the lab’s hours of operation?
The lab is generally open 9-5 Monday through Friday, however each semester specific times change. Be aware that during class hours, the lab is primarily reserved for students taking that class. Please review the calendar for our current semester schedule and open use hours.
What kind of equipment do you have?
There is so much we have to offer! The lab is divided into four main areas: wood shop, metal shop, digital fabrication, and casting. Please see the Facilities page for more details about the tools and equipment that we use.
What kinds of things can I make/do?
There are many possibilities for what can be created in the lab! Most students utilize the lab to complete class-specific projects, but it is also possible to work on a personal project here. We encourage you to check with a lab manager when getting started so they can help with your specific needs.
Do I have to pay to make/do x?
Our equipment is available to use at no cost and some materials are also available, but please check with a lab manager to be sure. If you have an extensive project, you will be asked to bring your own materials. An instructor or lab manager can help you determine the material needs of your project.
Do you hold any events that are open to the public?
Who’s Stan the Safety Ram?
Stan is our beloved mascot! He has a wealth of great safety information and wants to make sure everyone can follow good guidelines while in the lab. To catch up with Stan’s weekly tips and other lab activity, see our Instagram page!
Questions for Students/Faculty
I don’t know how to use any of this equipment/software. What do I do?
We periodically hold training workshops to teach the proper use and safety guidelines of our equipment in each area of the lab. For information about upcoming workshops, see here. If you have a large project or need to know how to use a specific piece of equipment or software, you can schedule a time to meet with the lab manager for guidance.
Do you have any tutorials or instructional videos I can use to learn more about the lab equipment?
You can find our equipment and software tutorials here. For more specific needs or issues when using equipment, see an instructor or lab manager for guidance.
I think something went wrong. Who should I ask for help?
If you encounter an issue with the lab equipment, seek an instructor, lab manager, or monitor for assistance. If you are severely injured, call 911 and notify the instructor, manager, or monitor on duty.
I have an idea but I’m not sure where to start. Can you help me?
It is always a good idea to consult with a lab manager or instructor on your project, even if you are already trained on the equipment. We have extensive knowledge in most processes in the lab and are happy to share efficient and economical methods. If you do not know how to use an equipment, or are unsure of the best materials and methods for your project, we can provide guidance throughout the process.
Can I hold a class in the FASTEnER Lab?
If you are a professor or instructor and would like to hold a class in our space, please contact the lab manager with your ideas or intentions in order to plan for the needs of your class.
Questions for Groups
Who do I contact to bring a group to the FASTEnER Lab?
We would be happy to host your group in the lab! For more information, please contact the lab manager, Kay Dartt, at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your specific needs.
What kind of group workshops or activities do you facilitate? What are the general guidelines for visiting groups?
The lab is a flexible space that can accommodate events ranging from 1-hour student workshops to tours to day-long corporate retreats. The activities we can offer, as well as conduct guidelines, will vary depending on the duration of the event, and the size and skill level of your group. Please contact our lab manager to discuss your needs.
I want to bring a student/youth workshop to the FASTEnER Lab. Are there any special guidelines for younger groups?
We can facilitate groups from ages 5 and up, but specific guidelines for your youth group will depend on the age of the group, the activities involved, and any requirements of the organization you work with. Please consult with a lab manager to discuss the needs of your group.