We are a tribe of problem-solvers. We make with a purpose while building skills for our future careers.

Part of the IDEA Institute, the IDEA Lab integrates design-thinking, building skills and mentoring for community college students to design, create and innovate.  Partnerships with business and community organizations provide students with real world projects and creative problem-solving.  The IDEA Lab supports students who want to work on team-based projects, or projects as part of a course, and anyone else who wants to gain new hands-on skills. Follow the IDEA Lab on Facebook

Become a member of the IDEA Lab today. Benefits of membership include access to equipment (3D printers, soldering, tools, electronics, etc.), internships, networking and more! Join our tribe today!

We moved! Come visit the IDEA Lab in Room 1529, just across from the student life desk. More space, more light and more ideas!

flickr logo see more pictures of IDEA students and projects

The IDEA Lab offers:

  • Real world projects in partnership with business, industry and community organizations
  • Workshops
  • Mentoring
  • Collaboration space

Request a tour of the IDEA Lab

Is your school or group interested in touring the IDEA Lab? The IDEA Lab tries to accommodate as many tour requests as possible. Please complete the request form here.

Need inspiration? See these teams innovate around complex local and global challenges

Students are designing an innovative technology for improving water conservation by reducing water wasted by buildings during the cooling process. Their project was selected as a Top Ten Finalist for the National Science Foundation's Community College Innovation Challenge and are invited to Washington, D.C. in June 2016 to compete for a first place finish. Good luck team!

Project UPLIFT (Uniting People in Learning and Ingenuity to Flourish and Thrive)

An interdisciplinary team of Red Rocks students who are working with Agile International, an NGO whose mission is to return Western Africa to food abundance by empowering local women farmers. Project UPLIFT works directly with Fatou Doumbia, founder of Agile and resident of Longmont, Colorado, as well as local community members in Sanakaroba, Mali to improve the farm’s infrastructure. Their involvement will benefit hundreds of women farmers who are currently trying to convert a 35-acre plot of land into a wide-scale sustainable farm operation. Project UPLIFT’s work includes designing a solar-powered well pump. See Project UPLIFT on Facebook!

RRCC Team Red Foxes wins national 2015 Innovation Challenge competition!

Congratulations to RRCC students Keya Lea Horiuchi, Scotty Hall, Nathan Tiedt, and Kaia Chapman (Team Red Foxes) and faculty mentor Dr. Helena Martellaro for winning the National Science Foundation Community College Innovation Challenge! They designed a Mobile Medical Disaster Relief Dispensation Unit with mentoring from their industry partner AppliedTrust. Follow the product development at!

Keya Lea Horiuchi, Scotty Hall, Nathan Tiedt, and Kaia Chapman (Team Red Foxes) and faculty mentor Dr. Helena Martellaro submitted to the NSF Innovation Challenge under Infrastructure Security.

Thank you to our supporter!

The IDEA Lab is generously supported by Xcel Energy.

Meet the IDEA Lab Coordinator

Jeremy Beard graduated from Colorado School of Mines in 2004 with a degree in Civil Engineering. He is currently working on a Master of Science degree in Environmental Engineering at Colorado School of Mines. When Jeremy is not mentoring students in the IDEA Lab he teaches the IDEA course (EGT 140). Jeremy's background is in water/wastewater design.

Jeremy can be reached at

For more information about the IDEA Lab and how you can get involved, email Liz Cox, Director of IDEA at