Director, Penn State Innovation Hub Makerspace

Location: State College, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.

Director, Penn State Innovation Hub Makerspace

Penn State is in the build-stage of the Penn State Innovation Hub, a new entrepreneurship and innovation facility located in downtown State College, PA. This new facility will become the University’s central innovation hub, bringing together the Happy Valley LaunchBox powered by PNC Bank with a newly developed 7,000 square foot makerspace.

As Pennsylvania’s sole land-grant institution, Penn State was founded to make a positive impact on the Commonwealth through teaching, research, and public outreach. One of the best ways we can fulfill that mission in the twenty-first century is by contributing to Pennsylvania’s economic progress. Recognizing that innovation drives progress in any industry—and that to have an impact, even the most promising ideas must move from concepts to marketable products or services—Penn State has committed itself to fostering innovation and entrepreneurship. We are seeking new ways to empower not only our students and faculty but also stakeholders and entrepreneurs from the communities we serve with the knowledge and confidence to pursue entrepreneurial success.

Launched in 2015, Invent Penn State focuses on entrepreneurship and innovation programs, tools, and resources that accelerate the movement of great ideas to the marketplace and make a substantial economic development impact across Pennsylvania and the nation. Stewarded by the Office of Entrepreneurship and Commercialization in the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research, the effort spans the University’s twenty-four campuses, all academic colleges, institutes, and centers and has quickly become a burgeoning entrepreneurial ecosystem supporting Penn State faculty, staff, student, and community innovators.

The new Penn State Innovation Hub is the next milestone in the growth of the Invent Penn State Innovation Hub program, which, in the last 4 years, has established 21 innovation hubs across the state. The Penn State Innovation Hub currently under construction in State College was specifically envisioned to include a makerspace to support makers from the university and community. The makerspace will include equipment and space for wood working, metal working, welding, painting, 3D printing, electronics, design, light prototyping, and an immersive virtual reality lab. The facility will be open to entrepreneurs and innovators from Penn State as well as the community.

Penn State is seeking to fill the newly created position of Makerspace Director. Reporting to the Director of The Office of Entrepreneurship and Commercialization (EOC), the Makerspace Director is responsible for complete oversight of Penn State’s makerspace. The newly hired director will be responsible for the planning, startup, and ongoing operations. This position will include some evening and weekend hours, limited travel, and supervisory responsibility.

Main Responsibilities:

• Manage and provide complete oversight for the makerspace, including administrative, operational, financial, and programmatic

• Determine appropriate staffing levels, lead the staff, with expected direct reports in operational and administrative roles

• Determine hours of operation, membership levels, rate structure

• Determine the appropriate equipment set and establish a maintenance program

• Develop and implement a training program, in conjunction with the Office of Environmental Health and

• Safety, that provides training to staff and to members on how to safely operate all of the equipment in the makerspace

• Develop and implement policies to align space usage with the mission and priorities of the makerspace

• Develop and oversee programs that meet the needs of the entrepreneurial ecosystem in partnership with the Happy Valley LaunchBox powered by PNC Bank

• Assess program effectiveness, and recommend changes to program content, policies, and procedures accordingly

• Proactively engage with units across the university to foster usage

• Plan, direct, and control the makerspace budget for personnel, equipment, operations, and other resources

• Actively work to seek funding opportunities


• Master’s Degree plus 3+ years of experience or an equivalent combination of education and experience

• Experience with manufacturing equipment, industrial design, and making/prototyping is preferred

• Work experience supporting a makerspace or similar operation, ideally at an educational institution is preferred

• Experience designing, implementing, and overseeing training and safety systems

• Strong interpersonal communication skills and budget management experience

• Experience in educational workshop planning and instruction a plus

Apply online at