June 24, 2021
The Infy Maker Awards are open to K-12 schools and youth-serving organizations who aim to create more opportunities for students to engage in hands-on, interdisciplinary learning through making. As a signature program of Infosys Foundation USA, each winning organization receives a $10,000 grant and the opportunity to attend the Pathfinders Summer Institute, the Foundation’s maker education and computer science professional development program.
This year’s theme focused on projects that empowered students to engage in maker education remotely. Applicants in this year’s Infy Maker Awards competition came from 34 different states and represented K-12 schools, universities, community colleges, makerspaces, libraries, museums and non-profit organizations.
A judging panel of experts and thought leaders in maker education helped the Infosys Foundation USA select this year’s 10 winning organizations and institutions. These projects range from maker kits to engage all students, including those with limited resources, to the MacGyver Wind Lift STEM Design Challenge, where students will explore the engineering design process by designing, building, testing and iterating upon wind powered lifts.
Here are the 10 winners:
Birmingham Public Library (Birmingham, AL)
The Birmingham Public Library will create maker kits for distribution at the library’s afterschool programs and for youth-serving agencies in close proximity to the space. These kits will be used for maker activities, including coding, robotics, electrical engineering, and design-based engineering.
Carroll County Public Library (New Windsor, MD)
Carroll County Public Library will equip its new makerspace at Exploration Commons with the resources and media production tools needed to deliver high-quality and free maker education programming remotely to local, national, and international partners and learning communities.
Gizmo-CdA (Coeur d'Alene, ID)
Gizmo will design, make, and deliver Micro:Bit kits to kids with new projects and sensors delivered monthly to cohorts of students throughout Kootenai County.
Kidspace Children’s Museum (Pasadena, CA)
Kidspace Children’s Museum will produce asynchronous, multilingual digital content to expand its online after-school STEAM enrichment program for Los Angeles Unified School District and Pasadena Unified School District to new audiences.
Komarek School District 94 (North Riverside, IL)
Komarek School District 94 will enable students to pick up backpack kits with Maker supplies from the school doorway and take them home. They will be able to independently explore a variety of themed Maker experiences based on the backpack they choose to check out for one week.
North Carolina Central University Fab Lab (Durham, NC)
The NCCU Fab Lab will expand its FAB & GRAB project to include more high-tech maker activities that provide learning experiences with tools associated with STEM trajectories. The Fab Lab will also resolve challenges engaging underrepresented communities unable to participate due to lack of internet connection and transportation.
Ohio Energy Project (Worthington, OH)
Ohio Energy Project will expand the MacGyver Wind Lift STEM Design Challenge, where students explore the engineering design process by designing, building, testing, and re-engineering a wind powered lift.
Opera on Tap (Brooklyn, NY)
Opera on Tap will create Virtual Playground Opera: An Interactive Online Learning Program and distribute this program benefitting 3rd-5th graders nationally with support from our educational and regional opera partners.
SouthTech Schools (Boynton Beach, FL)
SouthTech Schools students will use technology to increase healthy food growth yield in hyper-local environments. They will develop foundational maker and technology literacy to monitor and evaluate the growth of food production, using these tools in the classroom, at home, and during extended school day opportunities.
The University of Montana spectrUM Discovery Area (Missoula, MT)
The University of Montana spectrUM Discovery Area will grow the number of students who have access to their maker-themed science kits. More than 15,000 kits have already been distributed to children across the state since 2020.