Berea College students, Anthony Ayebiahwe (junior), Jacob Heller (junior), Robert Hosking (freshman), Dylan Mullins (sophomore), Tran Nguyen (sophomore), and Eugeniu Prodan (junior), were selected to participate in a rigorous and elite program, University Innovation Fellows (UIF), that allows undergraduate students to receive training and support to become leaders who catalyze change on their campuses.
The Fellows, nominated by Dean Chad Berry and professor Dr. Peter Hackbert, and selected through a highly competitive application process, join 85 other schools that range from University of California, Berkley, Stanford University, Yale University, and University of Chicago. Candidates take part in a six-week, online-based training where they connect with a national network of 190 Fellows, and expand their knowledge on topics such as innovation, entrepreneurship, and design thinking to master the art of creative problem solving. The program emphasizes the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration by selecting students from engineering, computer science, business, and art/design programs. The six Berea students are challenged to examine their current entrepreneurial ecosystems, formulate action plans, and find ways to integrate ideas into solutions. On February 19th, the students will have the chance to join the other participants at the Annual Meetup in Silicon Valley, California. While there, they will participate in sessions in The Garage at Google and at Stanford’s d.school, both leaders in innovation.
Berea College offers a high quality liberal arts education to students who have great promise but limited economic resources, and it is through programs, such as UIF, that allows the students to make a difference on their campus, their communities, and the world. The program is run by the National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation (Epicenter), which is funded by the National Science Foundation and directed by Stanford University and VentureWell.