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About

The Innovation Labs are an interdisciplinary hub and center for experiential learning, consisting of a fully equipped makerspace, wood shop, incubator, and event space open to all University of Denver students, faculty, and staff.

We provide access to technology, knowledge, and mentors to assist students connect with industry partners and the local community to allow students to apply what they learn in the classroom in a real, meaningful way to positively impact the community.

At the Innovation Labs, students from diverse disciplines come together to transform ideas into projects, products and businesses.

Do you want to support the Innovation Lab's work?

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Meet the Team

  • Michael Caston Headshot

    Michael Caston

    • Associate Professor of the Practice in Innovation & Product Design & Development
    • Executive Director of the Innovation Floor
    • Faculty Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Living Learning Community
  • Isaiah Silva

    Isaiah Silva

    • Operations Manager
  • Evan Mues

    • Woods Lab Manager

Powered by Students

Students workers make the Innovation Labs go! Our student team are on-hand to help with equipment and projects during the hours our space is open. If you have an idea but don't know where to start come on in and chat with a member of our team. In addition to operations roles we have student workers who serve in marketing, accounting, and event capacities.

If you have a Work-Award and are interested in joining us visit the Student Employment page to view and apply for open positions.

Policies

  • Access

    Currently, the makerspace is open to:

    • DU students
    • DU faculty
    • DU staff

    The Innovation Floor also supports several DU sponsored activities that involve the community.

  • Hours open

    Our open hours change often throughout the academic year. Please check the top of the homepage of the website for our most current hours of operation.

  • Use policies

    Use of the Innovation Floor equipment is a privilege, not a right. Failure to follow safety and use policies can result in a loss of privileges.

    In the Innovation Floor, you can make anything you can imagine- as long as it's NOT:

    • Prohibited by local, state, or federal law.
    • Unsafe, harmful, dangerous or poses an immediate threat to the well-being of others.
    • Obscene or otherwise inappropriate for the DU environment.
    • In violation of another’s intellectual property rights. For example, the 3D printers will not be used to reproduce material that is subject to copyright, patent or trademark protection.
    • For commercial manufacturing – The equipment can be used for prototyping new commercial ventures, but not for manufacturing runs.
  • Equipment training

    In an effort to remain accessible and lower the barrier to entry, you do not have to attend any official training to use the equipment in the Innovation Floor (excluding the Woods Lab)). We have developed quick-start manuals, "how to" videos, and have staff on hand to facilitate use of the equipment. However, attending a workshop is highly recommended. We hold frequent workshops around the use of the 3D printers, laser engraver, etc. For use of the woods lab, training is mandatory. Please check our calendar on the website for workshop dates and to sign up.

  • Reserving time on the equipment

    Currently, all equipment is on a first-come-first-serve basis. This may change at a future point when demand exceeds supply.

  • Consulting

    Have an idea and would like some professional help? The Innovation Floor is working to develop a student consultancy. For more information please email [email protected]with details about your project.

  • Emergency

    In case of a serious emergency, immediately turn OFF all equipment, dial 911, and contact an innovation floor staff member. All injuries should be reported to [email protected]

  • Safety Policies

    The woods lab has extensive safety and use policies. These are gone over in great detail and reinforced during woods lab training. Contact [email protected] for details.

  • 3D Printer Policies
    • The Innovation Floor staff reserves the right to refuse any 3D print request.
    • When removing parts from a tray, try to avoid using knives or scrapers. Attempt twisting part off the tray to break loose.
    • If you must use a knife or scraper, always push away from yourself. Never put your hand or any part of your body in the potential path of the sharp object. Wear gloves.
    • Cost: There is no cost to use the 3D printing capabilities inside the Innovation Floor at this time, but a fee structure may be imposed in the future to cover the printing costs depending on material usage.
  • Laser Policies
    • Only cut and/or engrave materials on the approved materials list. Certain materials such as PVC, ABS, and Fiberglass emit toxic gases and must not be cut or etched under any circumstances!
    • If you would like to use a material not on the safe materials list in the Laser-Cutting and Engraving handbook available in the Innovation Floor, consult an employee.
    • Do not leave a job unattended!
  • Sewing Machine

    Be conscious of where you are pushing the material you are sewing. Keep hands out of the path of the needle!

  • Soldering Iron
    • Always use the silicone pad to change the tip, even if you think the iron is cold. Do not touch the tip of the iron!
    • Wash your hands after you are done soldering or wear gloves during soldering.
    • Use the soldering exhaust hood when soldering.
    • Always wear eye protection.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • letter A

    Can I reserve equipment?

    Currently, use of the equipment is a first come, first served basis.

  • B icon

    Can I check out Tools or Equipment?

    Yes, with limitations! Speak to one of our staff for more details.

  • C icon

    Who owns the Intellectual Property (IP) created in the Innovation Floor?

    You do! As a general rule, students, faculty and staff will own the things that they create. If you create something on your own time, using DU resources that are accessible and common to everyone, that creation belongs to you. Additionally, anything that you create as an ordinary part of class (essays, poems, presentations, etc.) belongs to you as well. If your work in class is part of sponsored research project, you will own your creations unless the sponsor of the research project has made a different agreement.

    See the University’s Intellectual Property Policy for more information, found HERE!