Texas Tech University

Innovation Hub Launching New Programs for Entrepreneurs

Kimberly Gramm

August 18, 2016

Texas Tech’s facility is a place for ideas to grow.

Kimberly Gramm
Kimberly Gramm

Texas Tech University is calling on all aspiring entrepreneurs looking for help to take great ideas to the market.

Kimberly Gramm, recently hired as managing director for the Innovation Hub at Research Park, is unveiling new programs to empower the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs to launch successful startups. Programs for students, faculty and the community run throughout the year to offer mentoring, funding opportunities and space in the 40,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility.

Of the 16 programs, 11 are dedicated to students and community entrepreneurs. The remaining five capitalize on faculty expertise to offer something for everyone.

“LEDA is proud to support these programs,” said John Osborne, CEO of the Lubbock Economic Development Alliance (LEDA). “They can help ensure our community is receiving the education, early-stage funding and mentoring our businesses need to develop.”

The first program to launch is the Red Raider Idea Competition, sponsored by the Texas Tech Alumni Association.

“It's a fun, ‘American Idol'™-meets-elevator pitch competition creating excitement in our community to vote for our entrepreneurs with the next big idea,” Gramm said.

The pitch with the most votes has a chance to win $2,000. Competitors are asked to create a 60-second video elevator pitch and upload it to the Innovation Hub website for voting. The Texas Tech community will then vote on its favorite idea. The competition begins Saturday (Aug. 20). More details are located on the website.

A cornerstone of successful startup programs is the mentoring and advice given by seasoned entrepreneurs. The Innovation Hub is accepting applications for mentors with expertise in technology startups. A team-based approach to mentoring is a best practice. The Innovation Hub models the program after the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Venture Mentoring System. Gramm and Jack Richards, the Innovation Hub's director of mentors, are recruiting 50 mentors to help local startups in their journey.

Supporting and launching successful startups is the mission of the Innovation Hub. Gramm said she is proud to have leadership organizations such as the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce, the Texas Tech Alumni Association and the Lubbock Economic Development Alliance passionately involved in developing significant resources for entrepreneurs. Together the Innovation Hub and its supporters are working closely with Texas Tech University System leaders to develop a robust entrepreneur ecosystem to positively impact the West Texas economy.

For more information on programs at the Innovation Hub, visit its website.

People are encouraged to use the hashtag #TTUInnovationHub when sharing on social media.

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