Explore Manual: the MAC lab


Isabella Bonilla

The Manual Achievement Center (MAC) may appear ominous at first, but inside is a host of comfortable seating, plant life and wide open windows.

Isabella Bonilla

The second installation of our Explore Manual series takes its journey to room 113, which is located on the opposite end of the hall from where the cafeterias and gym are. The Manual Achievement Center (MAC lab) has seen brighter days since the pandemic’s antics; nevertheless, it’s still a valuable resource and important hub of student activity within the building. 

The MAC lab, run by Coach Carmony, is a space primarily dedicated to peer tutoring, eSchool and helping students with any school-work related woes. It’s currently open only during school hours and may be accessed at any point during this time, as long as a student has teacher permission and signed agenda/note. Students may also stop by during their lunch period. 

While students may stop by any time, it’s recommended that you access the MAC QR code to sign in ahead of time and see tutor availability. This QR code may be found distributed around the building or in the MAC lab itself. Around two to five peer tutors are available each block, each of whom have their own area of expertise (or set of expertises). Not every block may have a peer tutor who can cater to your area of need, so filling out the QR code can be beneficial. The new MAC coordinator, Mrs. Richards, will help match you to an available peer tutor or assist you herself. 

Past years have seen not only peer tutors in the MAC, but UofL tutors and even Manual teachers themselves helping students understand certain content. This has been limited to just peer tutors due to pandemic restrictions, with the hope to fully incorporate others as COVID subsides.

The help and resources found in the MAC extend all five subjects and beyond. If you need help with organization, getting oriented to high school or a plethora of other needs, you can still find ample assistance here. There is no stigma with going to the MAC Lab. In fact, many upperclassmen remember when the MAC was more than just a place for tutoring. It was also a hub of student activity and communal spirit. 

Students are still able to gather for group work or hang out when appropriate, as long as social distancing is maintained. Card games are a popular pastime and a sure way to spread the positive community vibes. 

Tables are now more separate (as opposed to the pods they were once in) and students are required to adhere to social distancing guidelines. This, in combination with the overall lessened traffic of building movement and ability to utilize the MAC, has led to a more scarcely student populated environment. Things have picked up slightly since returning in-person. There’s hope that the upward trend will continue and by next school year or so students will be able to gather as they did once before. It’s also a hope of the MAC Lab that additional resources will be available to students as COVID-19 begins to dissipate and restrictions are lifted.