The Digital Creator Lab
By: Mabel Duimstra
Are you interested in renting a camera or starting a podcast? Do you need help on a digital project for a class? The Digital Creator Lab is here to help.
Located on the 2nd floor of the Mary Idema Pew Library, the Digital Creator Lab is the newest expansion of the GVSU Knowledge Market. Open Monday-Thursday, 12:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m., the lab is staffed with Digital Skills Consultants both in-person and online. The goal of the Digital Creator Lab is to put the equipment, tools, and skills necessary to make digital content within reach of students.
The Digital Creator Lab (DCL) is led by the University Libraries and collaborates closely with the GVSU IT department. Gabrielle Miller, Justin Melick, and Noah Campbell have been instrumental in the planning and implementation of the program. Miller runs the DCL, hiring and training the student consultants. According to Mille, the Lab advances students’ digital literacy both creative and academic, helping with project approach, editing and revising digital projects, understanding digital identity, and checking out equipment like cameras, microphones, and audio equipment. Additionally, some of the physical items in the DCL space include Macs that are equipped with editing software like Photoshop or DaVinci Resolve (a video editing software that shares similar functions to Adobe products) and sound-reducing pods where students can record audio, attend classes or make podcasts. If students need assistance outside the Lab’s open hours, they can also find tutorials online that help explain the software and equipment that the Lab has to offer.
When asked what the most important thing students should know about the DCL Miller said, “We are interested in meeting students where they are at. It doesn’t have to be a fancy digital project; it can be any question around building digital skills. We are hoping that the new technology and additional resources that we’re offering through the physical space only help students. The digital skills consultants are there for students if they do have questions”.
The Lab is open not only to in-person students but also to those who are hybrid or online. If you are interested in a consultation, the Lab accepts walk-ins as well as scheduled appointments. To “walk-in” online you need only join the queue. It’s typical that students come to consultations prepared with a question or problem that they are seeking help with, but Miller said before your consultation know that “no question is a silly question”, the consultants are there to help you in whatever way they can.
Although the Digital Creator Lab has only been open for a short while, the staff have already seen major growth including a doubling of consultation numbers, a demand for more equipment - which they met by purchasing an additional camera - and more collaboration between the Lab and Faculty. So, whether you need help with a digital project, want to rent some equipment, or are just looking for a new place to study, the DCL welcomes you. For more information or to schedule a consultation, visit the Digital Creator Lab website.