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


Applications will continue to be accepted after the due date of October 10, 2014, but will be considered only on a space­ available basis. Thank you for applying! 

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

Participating schools assemble a team of faculty and academic leaders to assess their institution’s current offerings, design a unique strategy for change, and lead their peers in a two-year transformation process. Teams receive access to models for integrating entrepreneurship into engineering curriculum, custom online resources, guidance from a community of engineering and entrepreneurship faculty, and membership in a national network of schools with similar goals.

Twelve U.S. schools representing more than 24,000 undergraduate engineering students are currently participating in the program. Their projects include innovation certificates and majors, maker and flexible learning spaces, first-year and capstone courses, faculty fellows programs, and innovation centers.

The application deadline has been extended to October 13, 2014. Read more about the opportunity in our August press release, download the call for proposals and contact Liz Nilsen for more details and to learn how your school can be part of the initiative.

Exclusive Pathways Content: Innovation Spaces Video Series

Education space startup BetaVersity (founded by former University Innovation Fellows) has created an exclusive video series for Pathways to Innovation Program participants. The series "Making Room for Creativity" features insights from educators and provides a behind-the-scenes look at how university innovation spaces are designed, used and sustained.

Below is a sneak preview. Want to watch the whole series? Join the Pathways program!


Pathways Teams 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



Pathways hosted a workshop at New Mexico State University in October 2014.

Photos from the NMSU workshop

Applications for Pathways 2015 were due October 10, 2014. Read the press release »

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. Read the press release »



In the News

NMSU College of Engineering associate dean selected for student outreach award - October 29, 2014

NMSU grant aims to boost minority transfer, retention in engineering - October 26, 2014

Aggies accept 48-hour invention challenge - August 4, 2014

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

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