AnnMarie Thomas MakerspaceThe AnnMarie Thomas Makerspace is a contemporary manifestation of MPA’s long-standing belief that learning should be hands-on, experiential, and joyful. It is a place for the community (at MPA and beyond) to dream, imagine, share, grow, innovate, play, and inspire one another. It is the only PreK-12 creative center of its kind in the Twin Cities.

By consciously connecting liberal arts thinking with 21st century skills and competencies, the Makerspace provides students with opportunities to construct meaning through making by way of practical, hands-on, interdisciplinary, problem-based projects. Students use design thinking to empathize with individuals and design creative solutions to problems through an iterative process involving brainstorming, prototyping, and testing.

The Makerspace bears the name of Dr. AnnMarie Thomas, former associate professor in the School of Engineering and Opus School of Business at the University of St. Thomas. Dr. Thomas is renowned author, researcher, presenter and leader of the maker movement and playful learning. The naming of the space after Dr. Thomas is in recognition of her leadership in the maker movement and her work to inspire girls and young adults to pursue engineering as a field of study and a career.

MPA is grateful for the philanthropic support that allowed MPA to make the Makerspace a reality and for the collective effort of teachers, students, and parents who came together to dream big.