Are you interested in learning about how to become a more empowered consumer and are you interested in technology? Would you like to learn tinkering skills that will serve you well throughout life? If so, the Illini Gadget Garage is looking to mobilize its services and can come directly to you. Host a pop-up clinic–we can tailor our demonstrations and assistance to the needs of your organization. At a pop-up clinic we can troubleshoot cell phone repair, laptop teardowns, solve software issues, or demonstrate how to solve a wide array of other issues. There is no need to worry about having the right tools or equipment, we are well stocked and all you need to do is show up.
In addition, we are open to helping all groups of people and you need not feel like you have to have prior experience with sustainability related topics. For example, on March 14th we set up a pop-up during Teenspace, an after school program for local middle and high school students. Our interactions with the adolescents helped foster a fun learning experience. Students not only worked with tools, but also learned about the accessibility of technology and the right to repair. Some students even stated that the experience made them, “want to work with technology one day.” There are many people around campus who have yet to decide on a career path and as technology is an emergent field, someone may find that they are naturally inclined towards it.
Our pop-up clinic service is free for on-campus entities thanks to funding from the Student Sustainability Committee.
Fill out the “Host a Pop-Up Clinic” online form to indicate your interest and to provide some basic information about your situation. We’ll be in touch for scheduling!
So you have some faulty technology, but you have class or another commitment during our open hours, we understand and that is why we are hosting “Tech Tuesdays” at the UGL. Every Tuesday, from 6-9 PM, we will have one of our associates in the media commons. Feel free to bring your damaged device or discuss the issues that you may be having. If we can’t help you on the spot, we can at least advise you on the best course of action and you may find it worthwhile to bring your defective item to our Research Park location. Furthermore, this is a good opportunity to discuss volunteering options, for any of you that may be interested. Additionally, we are looking to add “pop ups” at other locations. If your organization is interested in having us, just fill out the following form, https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1xp8I4lK_CWeW8cM2PwqKkBhExyq0mvxkzJc_WtmvVDI/edit. Don’t strain your budget or fill a landfill with harmful electronic waste, instead check us out on a “Tech Tuesday” and see what we have to offer!
The renovations to make our physical location, INHS Storage Building 3 (SB3), are completed, and while we’re still in the process of rearranging and sprucing up the interior, we do have fall open hours scheduled. We’ll be open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 AM to 1 PM and Wednesdays from noon until 3PM. Please note there will be no open hours during the week of Oct. 3rd. Sorry for any inconvenience.
Pardon our dust while we slowly work to make the interior of the building more inviting! Note that there are some metered parking spaces in the graveled lot adjacent to the building, and an accessible parking space on the building’s east side. You can access the graveled lot/yellow pole barn area either from Oak Street, Hazelwood drive, or from Griffith Drive. If you take the bus to the corner of Oak and Hazelwood, follow the sidewalk leading west from Oak Street; this will join to a sidewalk that leads straight back to SB3. Our lovely new signs will be up on the north and south sides of the building soon to help you locate us. When all else fails, just look for the pole barn with the large antenna attached!
We’ll also continue to host pop-up clinics at various locations around campus. We’re planning have a table at the upcoming Campus Sustainability Celebration (Oct. 26) at Alice Campbell Alumni Center from 4-6PM as well as at the Urbana America Recycles Day Celebration on Nov. 19 from 11 AM to 3 PM at Anita Purves Nature Center. We’re working on having sign-up available for pop-ups at these events–check this site, our calendar, and social media for details in the near future on these special events, and for other pop-ups.
While our project team is exploring business considerations, including membership fees, to make this effort financially self-sustaining after our seed funding from SSC is spent, for now all services remain free for UI students, faculty and staff. The America Recycles Day celebration pop-up will also be free and available to the broader community. We want to spread the word about this project and get people comfortable with the idea of repair and considering the impacts of the products they own and our “throwaway” culture. If/when any fees become part of our operations, we’ll post that information on this page then. Until then let’s celebrate the opening of our physical space and product stewardship with free assistance!
If you’d like to make a donation to the SEI Various Donors fund to support the continued efforts of the Illini Gadget Garage in the future, see http://www.sustainelectronics.illinois.edu/SEIdonation.html. Be sure to note “Illini Gadget Garage” in the “Comments or Other Instructions” field on the form. Thank you!