Everyone agrees that the fabrication industries like metal working would be better off if more women participated. However, very few so-called gurus would ever venture a suggestion other than stressing STEM education in school. If you are interested in seeing inclusion at all levels, you may want to take a look at what the Bodgery is doing.
Co-founders Karen Corbeill and John Eich have hit upon a process that centers on hosting regular craft nights. This allows their team to introduce women and other soft crafters to the shop. While there, they can then be exposed to harder crafts such as metal and wood working. A similar process in other makerspaces could lead to a few extra dollars for women whose families really need it.
You may also take some inspiration from Karen’s response to a question about what she was most proud of about the Bodgery’s makerspace development process. “We strive to be a very open and welcoming community and through our efforts we have a high percentage of female members and regular visitors.”
Imagine makerspaces all over the country that aspire to same level of inclusion as the Bodgery. Consider how makerspace development could help Americans take control of their futures. How makerspaces could provide Americans with the just-in-time learning environments that they need to succeed. In the end, that’s the real promise of makerspace development.