One novel approach to creating new ed-tech leaders

Will other university leaders attempt to expand innovation centers on their campuses?

It should come as no surprise why college and university leaders are exploring novel approaches to advance education technology and business innovation.

A 2013 report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) surveyed math, reading, and problem solving skills across 24 countries. Of the more than 5,000 Americans sampled between 16 and 65, the United States ranked 21st out of 23 in numeracy (solving problems in a mathematical context), and 14th out of 19 in technology skills (problem-solving using a computer).

Credit: U.S. Department of Education

Although these statistics are troubling, university officials appear to be taking a proactive approach to not only boost math and technology literacy, but to inspire a new generation of ed-tech leaders.

New York state is providing $60 million in funding to the State University of New York at Stony Brook for a new “Innovation and Discovery Center” to be located in the University’s Research & Development Park. The new facility will provide room for start-up companies.

New York State Senator Ken LaValle praised the new center as “an economic development project of regional significance.” The new facility will help nurture start-up companies with the necessary space and opportunity to create and innovate, while also attracting out-of-state businesses.

Read the full story in the Three Village Patch.

Advancing university entrepreneurship is not limited to the Northeast or Silicon Valley. In the nation’s heartland, Wichita State University is investing $34 million in an “Innovation Campus.”

The building will be a tech hub for students and businesses to expand innovation. University officials describe the initiative as an “early stage entrepreneurial university spin-out companies and existing technology-based businesses.”

Read the full story in the Wichita Business Journal.

Do you think these types of entrepreneurial facilities will help improve American math and tech literacy? Will other university leaders attempt to expand innovation centers on their campuses? Share your thoughts in the comments section below and by joining the conversation on Twitter @Michael_eSM.

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