Every once in a while, the good folks catch a win. And such is the case this week. Invent Oregon — a program that has inspired college entrepreneurs from around the state and whose annual competition has become a marquee startup event — has garnered a $1,000,000 grant from the Lemelson Foundation.
The grant provides additional resources for increasing the number of community college, university and college campuses participating in the statewide InventOR competition, which supports students in prototyping novel inventions and pitching their ideas to judges. Expansion of the program includes building invention and entrepreneurship ecosystems at Oregon institutions, launching local competitions at their institutions, and creating vehicles for their students to learn new skills and increase their networks.
“The students in our program enter the workforce with a different mindset and many of them go on to start companies,” said Juan Barraza, director of student innovation at the PSU Center for Entrepreneurship and a mentor to InventOR student competitors across Oregon. “We are grateful to The Lemelson Foundation for sharing our vision of what’s possible when you create a place where students can be challenged to innovate.”
For more information, see the Portland State University announcement.