Volunteer in Training Program

The Volunteer in Training (ViT) Program is designed to train incoming volunteers to work shifts in the Georgetown University Maker Hub. ViT’s will learn Maker Hub systems and policies, practice hands-on skills at different making stations, and hone their interpersonal skills as they shadow an experienced Maker Volunteer Parent (MVP). If becoming a Maker Hub Volunteer sounds up your alley, fill out the Volunteer Interest Form!

Schedule

The ViT Program is a six week program, correlating to six shifts. For the first four weeks, the ViT will shadow their MVP at the same time each week. For the last two weeks, the ViT is encouraged to attend other shifts to learn skills from volunteers other than their MVP, however this is not required.

During each shift, the ViT will focus on a different making station in the Maker Hub. The different making stations are:

  • Woodshop
  • 3D Printers
  • Laser Cutter
  • Electronics
  • Textiles
  • Arts & Crafts
  • Print Shop

Benefits

At the end of the ViT Program, students will be prepared to tackle the responsibilities of being a Maker Hub Volunteer on their own. Benefits include:

  1. A personalized keycode to the Maker Hub doors, allowing access to the Maker Hub any time Lauinger Library is open.
  2. The ability to supervise friends and other students in the Maker Hub during off hours
  3. Eligibility for the Volunteer of the Month award

Exit Interview

At the end of the program, ViT’s and MVP’s will meet with the Maker Hub Manager and/or the Operations Coordinator. The meeting will serve to provide feedback to both the ViT and MVP, receive feedback on the structure of the ViT Program, and collect orientation information from the ViT necessary to grant them a keycode and officially welcome them to the Maker Hub Volunteer team! Here are some questions that may be asked in the exit interview:

For ViT’s

  1. What is/are your project(s)? Why did you make it/them?
  2. What was your favorite station to learn about?
  3. Do you have any stations that you are still unsure of?
  4. What was an intangible skill that you picked up from your MVP?

For MVP’s

  1. How did the training sessions go?
  2. What is your ViT's greatest strength? What do you think they can work to improve?
  3. What can be improved for next semester?

Skill Requirements & Practice Projects

Proof of Proficiency

ViTs must develop proficiency in three of the making stations at a minimum. Proficiency is defined as being comfortable with the tools, materials, and techniques in the station to the extent that the ViT should be able to teach someone else how to properly and safely use the station. 

For this program, ViT’s will demonstrate proficiency by creating a project that uses the equipment in a certain station. ViTs may choose to make separate projects for each station, or one project that incorporates skills learned in three (or more!) different making stations.

Expected Skills

In addition to becoming proficient in at least three stations, ViT’s are expected to have working knowledge of all stations. By the end of the ViT Program, ViTs should be able to successfully demonstrate the following skills on their own. Included are small projects that can help guide learning for each station. These projects are not mandatory and can be modified by the ViT or MVP to suit the learning goals of the ViT.

General

  • Attend each scheduled weekly shift. If ViT’s need to miss a shift, they must follow the same procedure as Maker Hub Volunteers
  • Learn the Maker Hub’s policies and procedures
  • Practice greeting visitors at the door
  • Give a comprehensive tour of the Maker Hub to a new visitor
  • Be familiar with the Maker Hub’s tracking forms, such as the Inventory form, Material Request form, 3D Printing log, and Laser Cutting log.

Woodshop

Project - Make a perfect sphere or cube from a block of wood. This may sound trivial, but is actually quite challenging.

Skills:

  • Find common tools and equipment such as safety glasses, hearing protection, hammers, hand drills, sandpaper, screwdrivers, glue, etc.
  • Identify the different types of hand saws and their uses
  • Identify different types of wood, such as solid lumber, plywood, and MDF
  • How to use a hand drill safely, both to drive screws and drill holes
  • Know how to read a tape measure
  • Bonus:
    • Use the following tools. These can be learned from the MVP if comfortable:
      • Drill press
      • Hand planes
      • Chisels
    • Use the following tools. These must be learned from the Maker Hub Manager unless explicitly instructed:
      • Track saw
      • Jigsaw
      • Miter saw
      • CNC router

Electronics

Project - Complete the first few projects in the Introduction to Physical Computing booklets.

Skills:

  • Identify Arduino and Raspberry Pi microcontrollers
  • Find soldering equipment such as safety glasses, soldering irons, solder, filter fan, etc.
  • Bonus:
    • Have completed any of the tutorials in the Introduction to Physical Computing packet. 
    • Solder different connections
    • Program in the Arduino IDE
    • Write programs for a Raspberry Pi

Print Shop

Project - Make a simple saddle-stitch booklet and/or carve a rubber block stamp

Skills:

  • Find basic bookbinding supplies such as paper, book board, bookbinding thread, bookbinding needles, wax, glue, etc.
  • Find basic print making supplies such as rubber blocks, carving gouges, ink, brayers, ink plates, barons, paper, etc. 
  • Use the guillotine paper cutter
  • Use the large sliding paper cutter
  • Use the etching press
  • Use a corner rounder machine
  • Bonus:
    • Use the thermal binding machine
    • Use the coil binding machine

Arts & Crafts

Project - Make a button

Skills:

  • Make buttons in each of the sizes
  • Find common crafting materials such as tape, glue, paint, markers, scissors, etc.

3D Printers

Project - Download a model from Thingiverse, set it up in Cura, and print the model.

Skills:

  • Set up print jobs in Cura with a good understanding of the print parameters
  • Unload, load, and change filament in the FDM 3D printers
  • Identify different material filaments and their uses
  • Remove completed print jobs carefully and place them in the correct location
  • Use Thingiverse to find and download pre-designed models
  • Understand the basics of TinkerCAD
  • Open and complete the 3D Printer Tracking Log
  • Bonus:
    • Use TinkerCAD to design custom models or modify existing models
    • Understand the complete SLA printing process including setup, printing, cleaning, and curing
    • Change the resin in an SLA 3D printer

Laser Cutter

Project - Make a name plaque for yourself to hang on the peg board. Design it however you like.

Skills:

  • Create basic designs in Adobe Illustrator (Ai)
  • Describe the three different types of cutting operations the laser cutter can perform and their associated parameters in Ai 
  • Understand the approved and disapproved materials that can go in the laser cutter
  • Identify pieces of different materials such as MDF, plywood, and acrylic
  • Open and complete the Laser Cutter Log
  • Read and understand the functions of a caliper
  • Bonus:
    • Take the CANVAS Laser Safety Course offered through the Georgetown Laser Safety Program. You must complete this course to become an approved operator of the laser cutter
    • Take the Laser Cutter SOP Training offered by the Maker Hub Manager. You must complete this training to become an approved operator of the laser cutter

Textiles

Project - Make an apron!

Skills:

  • Locate commonly used textiles tools and supplies such as sewing and embroidery thread, needles, thimbles, seam rippers, scissors, marking chalk, etc.
  • Locate the ironing board and iron
  • Wind a bobbin on a sewing machine
  • Properly thread a sewing machine and insert a bobbin so the machine is ready to use
  • Identify scrap pieces of fabric that can be saved or thrown away
  • Bonus:
    • Use the serger
    • Thread the serger
    • Set up digital embroidery files using Hatch 2
    • Use the digital embroidery machines with proper thread, hoop, and stabilizer mesh
    • Knit
    • Crochet

Vinyl Cutters & Digital Design

Project - Make a sticker to put on your water bottle, laptop, etc, or make a heat-transfer sticker to attach to a piece of fabric.

Skills:

  • Load images into Silhouette Studio and trace them to get cutting paths
  • Identify the heat-transfer vinyl from the self-adhesive vinyl and describe the uses for each
  • Load a cutting mat and execute vinyl cutting jobs
  • Use transfer tape to transfer a vinyl sticker to an object
  • Open applications on the Maker Hub computers such as Adobe Creative Suite, Fusion 360, Hatch 2, Silhouette Studio, Cricut Design Space, etc. and describe their general uses
  • Bonus:
    • Use the T-shirt press to apply heat transfer vinyl to a piece of fabric
    • Use the Cricut machine to make a vinyl cut