America used to have “shop” classes. These were places for makers, inventors, and dreamers. They were a place for those who wanted to use their hands, in addition to their minds. It was the place where kids found that they love to tinker, to take things apart, and put them together. Shop classes were the starting place for the many people who loved to design, to build, and to create! Some were lucky enough to have a dad or an uncle who had a small workshop and were willing to share their know-how. But now these places are very rare, if not completely gone. For many, a personal workshop is just an expensive dream.
Over the past two decades I have witnessed the demise of hands-on skills teaching in this country. Schools have done away with these critical classes that taught practical life skills like: woodworking, home economics, and metal shop. These were the classes where people learned how to use tools and technology and develop the mindsets necessary to create new and amazing things. Many agree that once this country loses its ability to make and build things, we will have lost what made America great. Edison, Franklin, the Wright Brothers, Harley Davidson, Apple, HP and many others started in small workshops with basic tools. Many more Americans should have the same opportunity to innovate, collaborate, learn, and create their dreams. NOT just access to these tools, but proper and practical instruction on how to use them correctly and safely!
Companies used to have apprenticeship programs or once offered to take people in and train them. But most of these programs have gone away due to budget constraints or changing technology. Most companies do not have the time or resources to dedicate to training people in fundamental hands-on skills. So there is a vast divide between the companies that need skilled people and opportunities for people to obtain those skills. Especially today, where manufacturing is not just hammers and screwdrivers. It’s advanced textiles, robotics, automation, composites and other high-tech hands-on skills. The Skills Gap problem exists, but with very few solutions. We are that solution.
Vocademy is an idea that I have had for many years. A place that teaches real “hands-on” skills. Not just traditional shop skills, but a place that also teaches the most state-of-the-art manufacturing techniques. We serve educational institutions and companies weekdays, and become a makerspace nights and weekends that is open to everyone, ages 14 and older, 7-days a week. With all the amazing tools you would want in your own dream garage, workshop, or inventor’s lab. Then make it accessible to all those in the community (individuals, schools, and companies) who want to learn, build, create, and become makers. We have brought back the learning of real hands-on skills, and made it available to everyone.
The formula is simple. Come learn the subjects you want, when you want, and learn as much as you want. From beginner to expert, you decide how far to take your skills. Then take that knowledge with you in your life, hobby, or career. What truly separates Vocademy is that you can become a member and practice your skills in our facility! You can have access to all the tools you have learned to use, for a small monthly fee. It’s not just the tools or the building, it’s an incredibly collaborative and creative environment. It’s where life-long friendships are made, it’s where people come together and create amazing things. Vocademy is a tribe of makers, innovators, industrial artists, and you can be a part of it all.
We’re working with school districts to help inspire and teach kids. We’re working with private companies to train their workforce. We’re working with non-profits to help those who need these skills, such as: veterans, foster kids and others who are undeserved in our community. We now also help others start their own makerspaces! Please connect with us and let’s “make” the future together.
- 15,000+ Square foot, climate controlled facility.
- Office type environment (not industrial or warehouse)
- Located near the 60/215/91 interchange in Riverside.
- Traditional and State-of-the-art industrial arts tools.
- About a mile from UCR, downtown and restaurants.
- Free tours on the hour: between noon and 8:00pm, daily.
Large Worktables, Hands & Power Tools, Storage Containers, Extra Parts Member Lockers, DIY Library.
Electronics benches with all equipment. Oscilloscopes, DMMs, Power Supplies, Soldering Stations.
Stomp Shears, Hydraulic Press, Bandsaw, Grinders, Tube Bender, Sheetmetal Brakes, Tube Notchers & more…
Motorcycle lift, Bead Blaster, Workbenches, Panel Saw, and some really cool graffiti on all the walls!
Sewing machines, Sergers, work tables, Ironing Boards and much more.
3D Printing Area
Six V-Pro 3D Printers, MarkForged Carbon Fiber 3D Printer, large member-made 3D Printer.
Machine Shop Area
Manual Knee Mill, Manual Tool Room Late, ProtoTRAK CNC Mill, ProtoTRAK CNC Lathe.
Plastics & Composites Area
24″ x 36″ Industrial Vacuformer. Hot wire knife and 4′ x 8′ CNC wood/plastics router coming soon.
CAD & Classrooms
Capacity for 40 guests / students. Ten CAD/CAM Stations, Projectors, & more.
Six welding stations, six Miller MIG Welders, Plasma Cutter, Bandsaw, Chop Saws. TIG & O/A Welders are coming soon!
Sawstop Table Saw, Six Wood Lathes, Panel Saws, Band Saws, Industrial Planer, Routers, & more.
PARTNERING WITH VOCADEMY HAS TREMENDOUS BENEFITS
- Branding. We are much more accessible to schools, companies and the community.
- Showroom. We are a living showroom and a demo center for your equipment.
- Creating Users. We create new well trained users and fans of your brand of product.
- Exposure. Over 3,000 people visited Vocademy last few years and we are growing.
- Promotion. We have our partner’s promotional materials in our facility, our web marketing, and at events.
- Training. We provide training on your brand of equipment, products and/or materials.
- Curriculum. Our classes are written around the products used in our facility. Creating life long users.
- Marketing. We continue to have local and national press and Internet exposure on a regular basis.
- Market Share. We clearly help expand market share in industry, education, and the local community.
- Growth. You grow with us to dozens of locations and into smaller “Powered By Vocademy” spaces.
- Connections. We are connected to school districts, manufacturing industry, colleges and universities.
POTENTIAL FOR HUNDREDS OF FULL-SIZE LOCATIONS
& HELPING OTHERS START SMALLER SPACES
- Orange County
- San Diego (several locations)
- West Los Angeles / Long beach
- West San Fernando Valley
We consider locations based on strategic areas to draw from schools, universities, industry, and large local populations. The number one criteria for any future location is former retail space with plenty of parking, safety, and proximity to other amenities. Vocademy is a tremendous benefit to the schools, business, organizations, economic development, and many others in a community. We are a scale-able company with tremendous potential for growth and profitability.
We welcome conversations with those that want to bring Vocademy to their community. We are actively looking for industry and educational partners. We have the ability to replicate our business model everywhere. Each location will be run as an engineered (turn-key) system, based on our Vocademy Operations. Every aspect of the business is planned, orchestrated, and designed for sustainability, profitability and growth. Business plan and financial information available for qualified individuals or entities. If you are interested in learning more, please contact: Gene@vocademy.com
- Industry partners – Large companies that can benefit from the people Vocademy creates.
- Corporate partners – Companies that believe in our mission and want to get involved.
- Educational partners – Schools and universities that we can help make better students.
- City / County partners – To create a strong relationship with Economic Development.
- Investors & Sponsors – They key component to help Vocademy expand nationwide.
CURRENT EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES