Twelve teams of faculty and administrators in the Pathways to Innovation program gathered in Phoenix on Feb. 28, 2014. Photo credit Laurie Moore.


Call for proposals is open for Pathways 2015!

Download the call for proposals »

Download the one-page proposal overview »

About the Program

Today’s engineering students want to tackle challenges that have a global impact. They already gain a comprehensive technical education as undergraduates, but they also need a mindset and skill set to turn their ideas into practical solutions for real-world problems.

The Pathways to Innovation program is designed to help institutions transform the experience of their undergraduate engineering students. The program, created and run by Epicenter, helps teams of faculty and university leaders fully incorporate innovation and entrepreneurship into a range of courses as well as strengthen co- and extra-curricular offerings.

Each Pathways school crafts its own path based on an assessment of the institution’s strengths and opportunities. During the two-year strategic change process, participants receive access to training, content, a national network of engineering and entrepreneurship faculty, and successful models for integrating entrepreneurship into their curriculum.

The 12 schools in the Pathways 2014 group represent more than 24,000 undergraduate engineering students across the country.

Schools interested in joining the Pathways 2015 group should apply by October 10, 2014. Download the call for proposals and contact Liz Nilsen for more details and to learn how your school can be part of the initiative.


Pathways 2014 Schools and Team Leaders

California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
Bob Crockett
Professor, Biomedical Engineering & Director, General Engineering Program

The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art
Yash Risbud
Director, C. V. Starr Research Foundation

Howard University
Tori Rhoulac Smith
Director of Undergraduate Studies, College of Engineering, Architecture and Computer Sciences

Michigan Technological University
Leonard Bohmann
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, College of Engineering Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

New Mexico State University
Ed Pines
Department Head of Industrial Engineering, Enterprise Advisor for the Arrowhead Center’s Arrowhead Innovation Network

Patricia Sullivan
Assistant Dean for the College of Engineering, Director of the Engineering New Mexico Resource Network

Tennessee Technological University
Stephen Canfield
Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering

Vahid Motevalli
Associate Dean for Research & Innovation, College of Engineering

Texas A&M University
Magda Lagoudas
Executive Director for Industry and Nonprofit Partnerships, Dwight Look College of Engineering

University of California, Merced
Dan Hirleman
Dean , School of Engineering

Tom Peterson
Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor 

University of Massachusetts Lowell
Dan Sullivan
Lecturer, Mechanical Engineering; Faculty Fellow, UMass Lowell DifferenceMaker Program

University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Andrew Hardin
Director, Center for Entrepreneurship, Associate Professor, Lee Business School

Brendan O’Toole
Director, Mendenhall Innovation Program, Professor of Mechanical Engineering

University of Pittsburgh
Larry Shuman
Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Distinguished Service Professor of Industrial Engineering

Mary Besterfield-Sacre
Associate Professor of Industrial Engineering and Fulton C. Noss Faculty Fellow; Director, Engineering Education Research Center

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Ilya Avdeev
Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering & Applied Science

Call for Proposals and Info Sessions

We're now accepting proposals for the next group of Pathways schools. Download the document and join us at an online info session to find out more:

6/25, 3 pm EDT

7/23, 12 pm EDT

8/14, 1 pm EDT

9/10, 3 pm EDT

9/23, 3 pm EDT

In the News

Cooper Union Selected in First Cohort for NSF-funded Entrepreneurship Effort - April 29, 2014

NMSU selected to take part in NSF Pathways to Innovation - March 20, 2014

UWM to participate in national entrepreneurial program for engineers - March 18, 2014

Texas A&M selected to participate in Epicenter’s Pathways to Innovation program - March 6, 2014

UC Merced joins other campuses to encourage innovation
March 4, 2014

UC Merced Chosen as Pioneer for Entrepreneurial Program
Feb. 24, 2014

TTU selected to join national leaders in engineering education
Feb. 18, 2014


Fifty-four faculty and administrators met in Phoenix February 26-28, 2014, during which each school developed a plan to guide their efforts in the months ahead.

Photos from the February 2014 meeting

The list of Pathways 2014 schools were announced on February 13, 2014. Download the press release

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