THE HATCHERY Innovation Center

Hatchery Logo

Every day there are people addressing the world’s problems, no matter how big or small, and finding solutions that make life better – think velcro, Google Maps, Netflix, Yeti water bottles. Now, more than ever, people are redefining how they learn and how they work. The old system is breaking down all around us and there are countless opportunities for innovation. Many problems are far more complex than they were a generation, or even a decade, ago. Innovation and creativity will define the future. Some problems are technical, some are social. We want our students to have an understanding of how they might fit into that future by beginning their exploration in high school and making their educational experience more meaningful while they are at it.

The Hatchery is an innovation center at Camden Hills Regional High School begun in 2019. It is as much a concept as it is the two physical spaces in the high school it will occupy. The Hatchery includes coursework, a makerspace, community events and the promotion of an innovative mindset. The Hatchery embodies a different structure for learning by creating time, space, and resources for students to pursue questions and find solutions. Students are unleashed students to think for themselves, to dive deeply into an area of interest, and to collaborate with a vast array of others. The Hatchery will spark curiosity, foster exploration, and enable students to wonder. It will help us redefine what a high school education can be and ultimately will be a step in helping make the world a better place.

The Hatchery will break down the walls between the community and the school by hosting events for both audiences, making spaces and resources available to the community, and by collaborating with other innovators and entrepreneurs in our community. We want to become a community hub for innovation. We are not the only ones thinking about this. Here is an excerpt from the Maine Economic Development Strategy 2020-29, A Focus on Talent and Innovation, p. 5: "With that said, Maine’s strengths position us well to innovate, and opportunities for innovation abound in every industry. The time is right for Maine businesses of all sizes and sectors to partner with education institutions, nonprofits, and governments to drive that culture of innovation and, ultimately, deliver solutions that will not only power our economy, but the world economy as well."

The Hatchery is the inspiration for the school community to reflect on every aspect of what we are doing. Is our leadership innovative? Are our instructional practices innovative? Do we possess a mindset in how we do everything that seeks new solutions to make education better for students? Can students feel the innovative climate of our school and will that impact their approach to their lives?

In the News:
UMaine publication (see p.14)