January 2013

January 2013

We are only days in, and already 2013 is teeming with great novelty.

New HOme


IEI starts this year in our new home at the James B. Hunt, Jr. Library. For centuries libraries have served a distinct role as repositories of, and incubators for, ideas. We are honored that IEI’s work with you to generate and implement good ideas qualified us to be co-located in such an important space.

While you have heard much about IEI’s construction of the Emerging Issues Commons, you should not overlook the other aspects that make the Hunt Library a particularly unique place in North Carolina. With its Creativity Studio, Teaching and Visualization Lab and BookBot, this building provides the height of technological innovation for today’s students. One of the features I find most interesting about this library is its Makerspace, a lab for creating working prototypes, architectural models, and other objects. Tools include 3D printers, a 3D scanner and a laser cutter, enabling any student with an idea for product design to bring it to life. That’s 21st century learning. 

New Ideas

I’m happy to see students at NC State using the Hunt Library to participate in today’s production process. Even more thrilling is hearing your ideas on how students in grades K-12 across North Carolina may share such experiences.

Last month, I asked you to suggest ideas for the 2013 Emerging Issues Forum agenda that, if brought to scale, could feed an adequate pipeline of young people energized about manufacturing opportunities. You sent many great suggestions on ways to:

  • Get administrators, teachers and students off campus and on the floors of today’s factories.
  • Teach manufacturing skills as part of the school or extended day curriculum.
  • Use the media to promote emerging opportunities in manufacturing.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. They shaped the K-12 session of the 2013 Emerging Issues Forum.


New opportunities

I hope you are planning to join us for the 28th annual Emerging Issues Forum, @Manufacturing Works. Over half the seats are gone with a month to go before the event, and you would be pleased by the number of entrepreneurs, policymakers, educators and funders among the hundreds already signed up. Have you registered?

National speakers include

We will also hear from state leaders and those driving economic development in each of our economic regions. This new era of manufacturing holds significant potential for our state – but, we have to seize the opportunity.

See you at the Forum,

Content table

Learn more about this year’s Forum agenda


Andrew Liveris, President and CEO of the Dow Chemical Company, is just one of many speakers at this year’s Emerging Issues Forum. Read the full agenda here.

VIDEO: See the Commons being built!

After two months and 133,056 pictures, the Commons has been built! Check out this time lapse video and watch it come alive.
IEI Commons Time Lapse from Melinda Walker on Vimeo.

Learn more about the Hunt Library

The Hunt Library is now open to the public! With its creativity studio, gaming lab, BookBot and more, this library is truly a technological innovation. Click here to learn more about the exciting features of this exciting new space.