Monday Mentors: Meet Caitlyn Bishop, 3D Lab Technician and Maker Space Coordinator

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Monday, October 2nd, 2023

Caitlyn Bishop is an adjunct instructor in Fine Art and Foundation — but those aren’t the only roles she fills at PCA&D. She’s also a familiar face to students who are being guided through the safe and proper use of tools they may not be familiar with in an art setting. Bishop earned her BA with a concentration in Sculpture from York College of Pennsylvania and an MFA in Sculpture from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. Her work is driven by material and process and largely influenced by the natural world, more specifically fungi and slime molds.

Learn about her roles as 3D Lab Technician and Maker Space Coordinator, and what she finds especially rewarding about working with students in this way. 

What are some typical skills that you’re responsible for guiding students in? 

Caitlyn Bishop: Some skills I’m responsible for guiding them in (include) the proper operation and safety for a variety of hand and power tools. Each student gets instruction on the proper operation and safety regarding each tool they will use; they are also given all this information as a typed document for them to review at the beginning of the semester. Before the students are allowed to use the tools, they will have demonstrated proper operation of each tool. 

Part of my tech position is that I maintain the tools. I make sure they are running safely. If something breaks or a blade needs to be changed, etc., I am the one to fix it.

Is one of your goals to help build students’ confidence in using this equipment and these new skills?

CB: Absolutely. The skills they learn in the 3D lab are here to help them throughout their education. My hope is by learning these new skill sets it will lend to more possibilities within their own work in their desired concentration. Another thing I do as the 3D Tech is hold workshops throughout the year. These are usually a framing workshop and panel-making workshops.

What kind of equipment/tools does the 3D Lab house?

CB: The 3D lab has a wide variety of tools. Some of the large power tools we have are SawStop table saw, bandsaws, chop saw, belt/disc sander, drill press, and a panel saw. Some of the smaller power hand tools we have a drills, sanders, routers. There is also a variety of rasps and files, saws, gouges and chisels, hammers, screwdrivers, etc. 

What kind of equipment / tools does the Maker Space house?

CB: We are still developing the space, but it has 3D printers, a laser cutter, DNC machine, milling machine, and soldering setups. It is exciting to think of all the possibilities this space will be able to bring. 

What do you find most rewarding about this position? 

CB: Seeing students have their ideas come to life and learning new skill sets. Students tend to surprise themselves with how much they learn using the 3D lab.