Campus Updates

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Katherine Aidala

Director of the Fimbel Maker & Innovation Lab; Kennedy-Shelkunoff Professor of Physics

Katherine Aidala employs creative techniques with the atomic force microscope to study a wide range of nanoscale devices and materials, with applications in solar energy, data storage, and biotechnology.  Her work has been supported by grants from the NSF and she received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers in 2010.  Beyond the standard physics curriculum, she teaches Gender in Science and Science in the Media, and regularly gives talks on the under-representation of women in science.

Katherine Aidala


Alexis Allen

Coordinator of Fimbel Maker and Innovation Lab

Alexis Allen manages the short and middle term operations, tracks lab activities and assessment, and assists in developing policies and procedures to help with Fimbel operations. Alexis oversees our budget, purchasing, event coordination, and hiring of student workers. She joined the MHC community in 2019.

Alexis Allen

Kris Camp

Design Mentor and Technical Lead

Kris Camp joined the MHC community in 2018 as part of the makerspace expansion and move to the newly renovated Prospect location. With a background including product design, architectural design and custom millwork, Kris makes a broad range of knowledge and skills available to help the Fimbel Lab community develop, explore and refine projects of all sorts. Kris supervises and trains users of the Fimbel Lab and helps to maintain a safe and well functioning facility.

Photo of Kris Camp

Shani Mensing

Design Mentor and Technical Lead

Shani Mensing is the Design Mentor and Technical Lead and co-founder of iDesign Studios Course. She assists in academic collaboration with the Makerspace as well as across disciplines. She oversees activities, training, and workshops in the Fimbel Lab as well as maintaining and educating the community on the equipment housed in the Lab. She also supervises and trains student staff, on an ongoing basis, to assist in building interest and projects in the Lab.  Book an appointment.

Shani Mensing

Luke Jaeger

Technical Project Administrator

Luke Jaeger is the computer science department systems administrator. He also brings an eclectic studio art background to the MHC makerspace, where he helps students and staff with physical fabrication and 3D printing. On any given day he is equally likely to be operating a computer keyboard, soldering iron, table saw, or laser cutter. Luke's drawings, paintings, and small sculptures have been exhibited in Boston and New York; his animated films have been shown in festivals and theaters worldwide. He also plays in a guitar orchestra and a funk / soul band.

Luke Jaeger

Affiliated Faculty

Thomas Ciufo

Associate Professor of Music, Project Manager of Arts & Technology; on leave Fall 2021

Thomas Ciufo is a sound artist, composer, improviser, and music technologist working at the intersections of electronic music, electroacoustic performance, sonic art and emerging digital technologies. Additional research and teaching interests include audio recording and production, acoustic ecology, and innovative approaches to teaching, learning, and career development. As a faculty innovation hire in digital music and music entrepreneurship, Thomas is developing new courses and facilities to support student explorations in creative music technology. He is also a faculty affiliate in the Makerspace.  

Thomas Ciufo, Assistant Professor of Music

Naomi Darling

Five College Associate Professor of Sustainable Architecture

Naomi Darling teaches design studio courses with a sustainable lens focusing on climate, culture and materiality at Mount Holyoke College and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Darling’s research and professional practice, Naomi Darling Architecture, LLC, develop projects at all scales in terms of size, time and permanence, and students are often engaged in real sites and programs. Permeating all projects is a dimension of environmental stewardship, social responsibility and the role of architects as agents of change. Current projects include a Performance Bandshell for the Amherst Green, a Kayak Kiosk for the Town of Sunderland, artist studios, net-zero affordable housing prototypes and folding tent structures.

Professor Darling in front of snowy trees

Rick Feldman

Lecturer in Entrepreneurship, Organizations and Society; Entrepreneurship Coordinator

Following a blended career of business, social action and academia, Rick Feldman continues to span and integrate the arenas of industry and regional economics, start-up and social enterprise entrepreneurship, education, and policy development in local and global arenas. His current focus is on all aspects of entrepreneurship and social enterprise development, and his current course offerings reflect this range and integration, by focusing on global and local challenges from which opportunities for solutions can emerge through innovation and entrepreneurial leadership.

Rick Feldman Visiting Lecturer, Entrepreneurship, Organizations, and Society

Audrey St. John

Professor of Computer Science; Chair of Computer Science

Motivated by computational challenges arising in robotics, biology and computer aided design, Audrey St. John’s research focuses on building theoretical foundations and developing efficient algorithms for geometric problems. She has received a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award from the National Science Foundation to support her work on autonomous multi-robot formations. St. John also works on activities to broaden participation in computer science and STEM, including creating low-risk hardware experiences through the makerspace and helping to develop MaGE, an inclusive academic peer mentorship program (funded by Google’s CS Capacity program).

Audrey St. John