ProjectKitchen is an initiative for self-managed projects for students of the UAS Technikum Wien, which has been initiated by the UAS Technikum Wien (in particular the "AsTeRICS Academy for Cross-Cultural Education" and the Gender-Mainstreaming Think-Tank) in cooperation with the UAS Technikum Wien student union (FH-Twist). The approach is based on the so-called "hackerspaces" that promote a casual and playful approach to technology. The ProjectKitchen provides a space and an organizational framework for students of the UAS Technikum Wien in order to implement projects or to organize workshops. The projects here may be social as well as technical. A swap meet for study support and a non-monetary motivation system promote networking and mutual exchange of students, without creating pressure to perform. A special feature of the ProjectKitchen is that the project content and events are planned and largely also conducted by students in a self-organized manner. Special attention is paid to the promotion of equal opportunities in everyday student life, diversity and gender mainstreaming, in particular through the provision of means to balance unequal prior knowledge of different groups of people (especially in the STEM subjects), through assistance with language difficulties or through organization of particular events for female students. These diversity issues and a gender-sensitive planning are important objectives in the implementation of the ProjectKitchen.
Promoting Creativity, Innovation and Commitment
A basic idea of the ProjectKitchen is that by freedom and opportunities for taking responsibility, a basis for creativity and innovation is created. This opens up new perspectives especially in stringently organized training program of the UAS. Through a playful or artistic use of technology, inhibitions and fears among newcomers are degraded, exchagne with experienced colleagues is fostered, and fascinating results may emerge which benefits both, the participants of the ProjectKitchen and the UAS Technikum Wien as such.
Interfaces to UAS Technikum Wien intitutes and research activities.
Interfaces to UAS Technikum Wien institutes and research activities
The ProjectKichen provides institutes and research groups of the UAS an opportunity to present their work to students in a casual atmosphere and expand interdisciplinary networking possibilities. Furthermore, there are numerous opportunities for the UAS-institutes and research groups to get involved in the areas of "gender mainstreaming" and "diversity".
Organizational form and initial activities
The ProjectKitchen is organized as an association with a governing body. The final form of organization, as well as the house rules and the legal situation eg in liability issues still must be clarified. There is a duty to report to the UAS management and to the Students' Union regarding the use of resources. For successful establishment of the ProjectKitchen, clarifying the spatial, financial and legal conditions is essentially important. To this end, working groups were jointly founded on these topics, after a first needs assessment with students. Interested persons are informed through a mailing list and a wiki. Only after clarifying the important fundamental issues and coordination with HTW management, Rector or limited liability companies and corporate communications, the space can be prepared and the operation can be started. As time horizon the WS 2014/15 is planned.
The focal points of the pratical work
- Programming Basics
- Soldering, microcontrollers and electronics practice
- Rapid prototyping (3D printing, CNC, Laser Cutter)
- Mentoring (support by advanced students)
- Exchange and assistance (repairs, hardware flea market, ..)