School:Sierra College

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Sierra College is a campus that is continuously growing, having almost 18,000 students taking classes at the Rocklin Campus alone. Sierra College is driven by makerspaces and change, leading the state to consider it the leading campus for innovation. With new grants coming in every year, Sierra College is continually striving to improve innovation and entrepreneurship.

Change Story Video 
Group 1 Fall 2017

Link to Lansdacape Canvas

Group 1 Fall 2017-</

Student Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Sierra College’s Management Business Certificate is a resource within the business department that prepares students for entry level management positions.

Sierra College also offers a Marketing Business Certificate, which is offered to prepare students for jobs such as marketing managers, business persons, merchandisers, and sales people.

Additionally there is the Interdisciplinary Entrepreneurship Certificate, which helps students with internships and apprenticeships that have a focus of starting a business and management capital.

Since being accepted as part of the CCC Maker grant in 2017 Sierra College plans to place 40 new interns helping them to develop a career matching their skill sets as well as teaching new skills required in the modern workspace like soft skills, critical thinking, and group work. Additionally Sierra College is became a part of the STEM Initiativein 2007 to bring more work based learning back into the classroom and creating tech labs to build the needed modern skills. 

Faculty Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Sierra College has always seen the significance of changing the curriculum to match the ever changing demands of the workplace. Since around 2007, Sierra college has been improving makerspace ideas within the campus, constantly revolutionizing their STEM education. Throughout their push they have been constantly encouraging faculty to participate with students in this movement leading Sierra to be the leaders in the state for Innovation. There are several courses that are currently being implemented that encourage the design thinking, innovation, and entrepreneurship mindset into the classroom. One of which is the Manufacturing Process which teaches students fabrication techniques, manufacturing processes and mechanical prototypes as well as the basics of prototyping. Another class is the Design Additive Manufacturing which teaches an introduction of how to design geometric objects for 3D printing, how to operate a 3D printer, and introduction to the product design process. Lastly, the Entrepreneurship, Starting a Small Business teaches students skills to a new product service offering as well as the steps needed to start a new business along with the logistics needed in establishing the business. Throughout these courses, faculty and students are expected to work together to create an innovative and entrepreneurial mindset that teaches the design processes, design thinking skills, as wells as an entrepreneurial idea of marketing.

University-Industry Collaboration

Sierra College challenges itself to work in tandem with local industries, bringing numerous industries to campus so students can network and interact with possible employers and learn about job opportunities. One example is the Hacker Lab, which focuses on giving students access to a host of complex and useful tools capable of helping them create even the most complex design.

Another industry collaborator that Sierra college works with is the Curious Forge, which is a nonprofit Makerspace that is over 20,000+ square feet. The facility allows members to training and access to over $100,000 in equipment ranging from basic tools to advanced CNC devices and 3D printers.  

The Truckee Roundhouseis another collaborator that Sierra College is associated with. The Truckee Roundhouse provides multiple shops, including a woodshop, metal shop, technology shop, textile shop, and ceramics shop. The Truckee Roundhouse is dedicated to giving students a place to create and learn.

Regional and Local Economic Development

Sierra College works with local businesses and high school campuses to improve the college’s course structure in order to better prepare students for the modern workplace. This Advisory Committee meets two to three times a year, deciding on how to improve their curriculum. Not long ago, this committee met with Roseville’s Water and Electric companies, determining that PSI interpretation needed to be added to the curriculum. By the next semester, the topic was incorporated into the program to better prepare students for this kind of work. Also, Sierra College recently received the CCC Maker Initiative grant to expand their makerspace resources and improve learning through tech labs. The CCC Maker Initiative allows Sierra to place 40 students into internship positions where they can learn vital soft skills and critical thinking skills.

Related Links

Sierra College Overview

Sierra College Student Priorities

University Innovation Fellow: Savanna Turner