Innovative Central PA Collaboration Model Expands To West Virginia
Harrisburg, Pa//10.19.11-- The Innovation Transfer Network (ITN), a group consisting of sixteen small colleges and universities collaborating with business, has signed an agreement with TechConnectWV to provide assistance in developing a plan that will begin to bring faculty research and business needs together in West Virginia.
ITN has attracted increasing national attention for its unique model in bridging the gap between private sector companies and academic expertise spanning both public and private institutions. In its sixth year of operation, the organization acts as a virtual commercialization office with access to more than 5,000 faculty members and 50,000 students.
“We are excited to work with the team from West Virginia and share our experience as well as our lessons learned to help them accelerate innovation,” says Jill Edwards, Executive Director of the Innovation Transfer Network. The Harrisburg-based organization highlights more than $500,000 invested in new products and services, $5 million in leveraged capital, and has attracted $1.3 million in grants from the National Science Foundation, including participation in a recent $750,000 ADVANCE grant award.
“TechConnectWV is pleased to partner with the ITN and share the benefit of their expertise and experience in finding new ways to bring viable ideas for commercial product development and jobs to the marketplace,” said Anne Barth, executive director of TechConnectWV.
A grant of $50,000 from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation will aid in launching the new initiative, the Innovation Transfer Consortium, which plans to provide technology transfer services to West Virginia’s smaller colleges and universities. Eighteen colleges and universities, both public and private, may be a part of the initiative. TechConnectWV will work closely with the WV Higher Education Policy Commission to assist in providing in-kind services and engage strategic partners and stakeholders throughout the state to provide expertise to the Consortium.
About The Innovation Transfer Network
The Innovation Transfer Network connects businesses to faculty and students at institutions of higher education in Central Pennsylvania to stimulate applied research, leverage innovation in the marketplace and accelerate commercialization. The organization is funded in part by its members, by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (PA DCED) and has received support from Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Central and Northern Pa. For more information, visit http://www.innovationtransfernetwork.org.
TechConnectWV is a non-profit coalition with broad representation from private industry, the public sector, and higher education. TechConnectWV works to enhance awareness, spur collaboration, and raise the discussion of issues surrounding technology-based economic development. Its goals are to diversify the state’s economy, promote economic prosperity, and create high-paying jobs. For more information, visit http://www.techconnectwv.com/.
Ms. Jennifer Hammaker
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