New Event: Find Funding For Your Business


Find Funding For Your Business

Alternative Funding Sources




¨ Learn about SEEDChicago, a curated Kickstarter site offering coaching

¨ Learn  about AccionChicago’s funding programs to fit your business

Even if a bank has turned you down, there are reasonable alternatives to get your business going.  AccionChicago ‘s Olivia Riedel  will discuss their crowdfunding program that includes curating your campaign and providing coaching to make it successful. She will also provide information on Accion’s other business finance programs providing up to $100,000.

DATE: Tuesday, June 13, 2017

TIME: 6:00pm to 6:30pm: Tour Prairie State College’s MakerLab and Manufacturing labs available to help you prototype

6:30pm to 8:30pm: Accion Chicago presentation

LOCATION:  Prairie State College

202 South Halsted Street

Room T-192 (Campus Map)

Chicago Heights, IL  60411
Free Registration at :


Entrepreneurship Workshop- From Prototype to Production


Nuha Nazy and Emilia Rogawska,  Co-founders, Z-Axis Factory

  • Hear Nuha’s and Emilia’s advice on developing prototypes and navigating the intricacies of moving into initial production.
  • Learn how Z-Axis also can help you increase your Etsy or craft business production and success.

Z-Axis is a shared manufacturing space with production services dedicated to helping artists, makers, Etsy artisans and small businesses increase the velocity of production through access to prototyping and short-run manufacturing services that were once only available for a steep price and with long lead times, and usually not locally. Z-Axis offers self-serve and production from textiles to advanced printing to laser cutting and CNC milling.  Plus, advanced equipment to photograph your creations. More at

DATE: Wednesday, May 31, 2017

TIME: 6:30pm to 8:30pm; Networking afterward

LOCATION:  South Suburban College Oak Forest Center

16333 S. Kilbourn Avenue

Oak Forest, IL  60452
Free Registration at :

Download Flyer


The Coleman Foundation  South Metropolitan Higher Education Consortium  


Successful Crowdfunding Workshop, May 13


  • Need funding for your startup?
  • Looking for a way to test the market and your pricing?

Yuri Gallegos contracted Dengue Fever from a mosquito on a trip to Brazil. That painful experience was motivation enough to create Elimifly, a better way to control mosquitoes to spare others from the many awful illnesses they spread.

Meet Yuri and learn how he succeeded with crowdfunding and how you can use it to raise startup funds, validate your idea, and launch your business.

Yuri will share the lessons he’s learned building a business, Quasar Designs. In this presentation and Q&A, Yuri will also share his entrepreneurial journey with us- from developing ideas to building prototypes to finding funding, suppliers and customers.

DATE: Saturday, May 13, 2017

TIME: 10:00am to Noon; Networking afterward

LOCATION:  SouthWorks MakerLab Park Forest

208 Forest Blvd.

Park Forest, IL 60466
Free Registration at

Download Flyer



The Coleman Foundation South Metropolitan Higher Education Consortium

OAI logo


Tall Grass Arts Association Features A “Maker” Artist


Tall Grass Arts Association, right down the block from SouthWorks, is a renowned arts program that has served the region since 1956 by providing classes, featuring Illinois artists in its exhibits, and holding a nationally-recognized arts festival every fall.

Their current installation, Flight of Obscurity X,  showcases the sculptures and various installation elements created by Ohio artist Nathaniel Foley and presented in a significantly transformed space. Foley’s sculpture focuses primarily on aviation process, materials and language and has a distinctly “maker” vibe to it.

Using aviation-oriented materials-from rivets to aluminum skins of fighter jets-  and using construction techniques used in aviation, Foley’s works transport the viewer from the expected white gallery space to this unknown pseudo-military experimental space.

The installation continues through April 15th.

More info  about Tall Grass and the Foley exhibit


Join us at the SouthWorks Engineering and Robotics Challenge


Join SouthWorks Park Forest at the first ever SouthWorks Engineering and Robotics Challenge at South Suburban College on Saturday morning, April 8th. The event is open to the public.

Over 150 high school students from 13 local high schools will be competing in five different challenges to show off their making and engineering abilities. Each team is sponsored by a local manufacturer, who also provided technical support to each team. The purpose of the event is to get more high school students interested in manufacturing and engineering and to have local manufacturers make connections with their future workforce. Some of the students may even leave with job offers!

SouthWorks MakerLab Park Forest is providing several  judges and creating the awards for the winners.

More info  here .


Register Here


We’re Almost There


We moved most of our equipment down to the new space and passed inspection! Just a few more additional projects and we’re ready to go.

We’ll begin Open Lab Hours on Monday, April 10th. So, stop by to check it out!


We’re Moving To Our New, Larger Space


Contractors just finished the build out of our new space directly downstairs. It’s a great storefront with double the space and much improved street visibility.

We’ll be closed for a period as we move our equipment and add some new equipment and fixtures. Our target re-opening is April 1st, and we’ll provide updates and a firm date here.

We hope you’ll use the downtime to develop new projects to begin when we re-open. Search Inventables, Instructables, Make, pinterest, Etsy, and other sites for ideas.

If you have projects in process that can’t wait, please visit one of our other SouthWorks MakerLabs. Joliet Junior College and South Suburban College (Oak Forest) both have open lab hours and experts to help you.


Attend Maker Faire Chicago at McCormick Place and Be Inspired


Visit SouthWorks MakerLabs at Maker Faire Chicago

The “Greatest Show and Tell on Earth”  is finally coming to Chicago in a big way. For two days, McCormick Place will be filled with hundreds of makers and tens of thousands of attendees PLUS C2E2!

Come and be inspired by all the amazing things makers are doing. Enjoy hands-on activities for all ages, demonstrations and workshops. Talk to other makers to learn more and to start your next project.

More information and tickets are at

SouthWorks MakerLab Park Forest and our SouthWorks affiliates will have robot demos, Arduino workshops, 3D printing workshops, welding simulators you can try, a student-made lie detector to test, and many projects to show off.