Thursday, March 21, 2013
McCune Foundation assists Carnegie Mellon University in combining entrepreneur initiatives
The business of building businesses in Pittsburgh has gotten a huge assist from the McCune Foundation and Carnegie Mellon University.
The university is combining two of its most notable entrepreneurial initiatives, Project Olympus and the Donald H. Jones Center for Entrepreneurship, into the CMU Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. The center is part of the university's Greenlighting Startups Initiative, which focuses on advancing university technologies to the marketplace.
The merger, made possible by a $7 million grant from the McCune Foundation's Big Idea program, will not only combine the programs' offerings into a single resource, but will ensure that technologies coming out of those programs are seen by the nation's top investors.
Dave Mawhinney, executive director of the Donald H. Jones Center, said the collaboration falls in line with the university's history of combining winning programs and initiatives.
"Carnegie Mellon's heritage is being interdisciplinary and collaborative so this is a collaboration between business and technology, but we also have great collaborators in design and engineering as well as technical disciplines like computer science and the Mellon College of Sciences," he said. "This is really walking the talk of CMU."
Project Olympus, which provides work space and professional guidance for student and local entrepreneurs in the Olympus Probe (Problem Oriented Business Explorations program), will continue to showcase its members work during seasonal events.
However, those events will be supplemented by Launch CMU, a biannual preview day that will give Silicon Valley investors introductory views of promising businesses in an attempt to draw them to a full show in Pittsburgh later in the year. The first Launch CMU event is scheduled for May 21.
Project Olympus founder and director Lenore Blum said attracting investors to Pittsburgh is essential to the center's mission to make Pittsburgh a destination for the nation's entrepreneurs...Read More»
By Deborah M. Todd / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette