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What is FabNewport?

FabNewport is an experiential learning organization that is hard to describe to folks who haven’t seen it in action.” University of Rhode Island Professor, Virginia Killian Lund

We run such a variety of year-round programs that serve diverse middle and and high school learners that it is not easy to say FabNewport is this or that. Ultimately, we provide learning, community, and mentorship. But let’s hear what Professor Virginia Killian Lund at the University of Rhode Island, a researcher with a keen interest in interest-driven learning environments, has to say about Fab.

What’s the secret sauce?

FabNewport is an experiential learning organization that is hard to describe to folks who haven’t seen it in action. Is it a makerspace? Yes! Is it arts-based? Yep! Is it environmental education? Uh-huh! Is it building career pathways? Absolutely! Is it mentorship aimed at positive youth development? All day! Is it about holistic mental and physical health? Yeah, that too! Is it supporting twenty-first century skills? One hundred percent. Is it equity-oriented? Yes, yes, yes.

FabNewport educators are on the move. Literally. Snapshots of their teaching days show teachers who are in a classroom one moment teaching an ACN course, the next moment they are hopping in a van to take young people surfing. Or they are touring a college campus in the morning and snorkeling in the afternoon before winding down with a friendly game of cards. 

Honestly, at first I struggled to wrap my head around all the directions that FabNewport educators and learners were moving. How does the same organization have golfing and 3-D printing? But over time I’ve come to understand: the movement is the message. FabNewportprogramming says to young people, “there are a million ways to be and learn right here where you live. You deserve to try things out. You deserve to meet this ocean of opportunities. You deserve to skim the surface to get a sense of where you are and what’s around you, and you deserve to have the tools and the support team you need to dive in deep when something beyond the surface catches your eye.”

FabNewport achieves learning through:

  • Relationships
  • Experiences-in-place that ignite interest & create community presence
  • Youth goals and visions
  • Developing “21st century skills”
  • Developing social and emotional skills


FabNewport’s mission is to ensure all youth have equitable access to resources, opportunities, and relationships to thrive now and in the future.

How Many Learners Have Passed Through Our Programs

Years We’ve Served Rhode Island Communities

Locations in Rhode Island

Opportunities for Adventure, Learning and Personal Growth