Of Interest: Crowdfunding Goes to School With Alumnifunder, Pave

Just into beta this week is Alumnifunder, which applies a crowdfunding model to collegiate capital-raising. From the site:

AlumniFunder exists to bolster a deeper relationship between students, alumni, and other alumni, by providing a platform to fund creative, innovative, and idealistically disruptive projects within the established university community. Whether it be a project to enhance the student experience on campus, raising capital to build a new science lab, or funding consumer development of a bleeding-edge robotics product, AlumniFunder seeks to facilitate access to crowdfunded capital for worthy endeavors.

There’s not much to see there quite yet, but Alumnifunder is something for all of higher ed to keep an eye on.

Like Alumnifunder, Pave (http://www.pave.com/) is another innovative alternative to educational financing. Their Support Center has all the details.

Of Interest: Partnerships in Pittsburgh

Educause Review Online recently published this piece about collaborative learning innovation and research by an interdisciplinary working group in Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh’s Education Innovation Cluster brings the region’s many Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) research labs and “formal and informal learning environments” together with its philanthropy and entrepreneurial communities, through forward-thinking use of technology and digital media tools.

This part stands out:

Inspiring Creativity and Raising the Next Generation of Makers

Pittsburgh is home to an emerging community of Do-It-Yourself (DIY) makers, tinkerers, inventors, and innovators of all ages. In and out of schools, makers combine physical and digital skills from science and engineering, technology and media, crafting, and the arts to learn how to work together to reshape the world around them.

MAKESHOP is a space for hands-on building and tinkering with old and new technologies, exciting projects and cutting-edge media and is the newest permanent exhibit at The Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. Working alongside crafters, hackers, and inventors, kids in the MAKESHOP can toy around with materials like wood, textiles, and electronics and learn creative processes like animation and printmaking.

Developed in partnership with Carnegie Mellon’s Entertainment Technology Center and the University of Pittsburgh Center for Learning in Out-of-School Environments (UPCLOSE), MAKESHOP benefits from ongoing stewardship from museum director Jane Werner and learning scientists like research fellow Lisa Brahms.

8th Day Project Teams are watching this organization, with interest.

Read more about Pittsburgh’s Education Innovation Cluster: Pittsburgh: Forging a 21st Century Learning Community