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Frequently Asked Questions

If there are any questions you have about the Paducah Innovation Hub that aren’t answered here, please get in touch.

What is the Innovation Hub?

The Innovation Hub is a new model for inspiring students towards emerging careers in health care, technology, and traditional trades. This model was developed in response to the talent gap for skilled workforce that exists in our region. It is located at 500 S. 25th Street adjacent to Paducah Tilghman High School.

What programs operate in the Innovation Hub?

  • The regional vocational school – also called the Area Technology Center (ATC) – offers welding, carpentry, auto tech, auto body, and health sciences.
  • The Makerspace offers field trip tours to any regional K-12 students, ongoing project-based learning workshops for Paducah Public School science students in grades 4, 7 and 11, and after school clubs and workshops for Paducah Public School and Vocational School Students (ATC). Special adult workshops will be available
  • Paducah Tilghman High School funds programs for its students in Information Technology, CAD (Computer Assisted Drawing), Engineering, Robotics, Junior ROTC (Reserve Officers Training Corps), Art and Pottery. These courses are only available to Paducah Tilghman High School students.

Who can attend classes at the Innovation Hub?

  • The Area Technical Center is available to ALL students from Paducah Independent, McCracken County, Livingston County, and Graves county as well as private schools such as Saint Mary and Community Christian and homeschool students. Information and registration is here.
  • The regional Makerspace is available to students in Kindergarten through High School as well as adults. Information and registration is here.
  • Paducah Tilghman students can attend CAD (Computer Assisted Drawing), Engineering, Robotics, Junior ROTC (Reserve Officers Training Corps), Art and Pottery, and a Special Needs and Abilities class.

What is the Makerspace?

The Makerspace is a unique area where students and adults have the opportunities to learn unique skills and innovative projects. We offer programming in 3D printing, laser engraving, augmented and virtual reality, and many more. Special projects are done upon request. For more info on the makerspace contact Makerspace Director Tim Franklin at timothy.franklin@paducah.kyschools.us. Makerspace programming is free to Paducah Public School students. Other districts are welcome to participate for a fee.

Are there special fees associated with activities at the Hub?

How is the Innovation Hub funded?

The Innovation Hub staff are funded by both state and local education agencies. Materials for special projects, free workshops and events are provided through generous donations from individuals and industry.

If construction of the Hub is paid for, why are you fundraising?

The Innovation Hub is a $24.3 million project made possible through a $4.5 million state grant, $3.5 million in available PISD funds and $16.33 million in 20-year bonds sold by the Paducah Independent School District. While these funds cover the cost of the building itself, additional funds are needed to cover:

  • Supplies that are used in classes such as welding rods and 3D printer filament, soldering stations, craft devices, design software, etc.
  • Scholarships to cover the costs of Makerspace camps and after-school activities for students in poverty
  • Special competitions and events not included in regular school activity


Is the Innovation Hub right for my child

A freshman exploratory class is offered every nine weeks to students who are eligible to attend the Area Technical Center programs.  In this class, students will get to sample working on small projects in Welding, Carpentry, Autobody/Painting, and Auto Technology labs. A one-year exploratory class in Technology and Computer Science is offered through Paducah Tilghman. For more information, contact your school’s guidance counselor.

How do I register?

Each program requires a separate enrollment or registration process. See the individual program area for more details or speak to your school’s guidance counselor.

When can my child register?

Registration for the Area Technical Center and Paducah Tilghman High School are March to July each year. The makerspace offers ongoing field trips and after school workshops.

How is transportation provided?

  • Each school district involved in The Area Technology Center programs provides transportation for its students.
  • Paducah Tilghman Students can walk to the Innovation Hub through a connected hallway.
  • Schools groups and after school attendees to the Makerspace must provide their own transportation.

How can I get involved?

Volunteers, mentors, and financial supporters are needed in order to keep the efforts of the Innovation Hub fresh, relevant, and exciting. Email us to learn more about volunteering or mentorship. Read more about sponsorship or click or to donate.