NEWPORT, R.I. – The Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Rhode Island (AICU Rhode Island) is partnering with local startups to host the inaugural Newport Startup Session, taking place on the campus of Salve Regina University from June 23 to July 1. The collaboration is a product of bRIdge, an economic development initiative connecting Rhode Island’s colleges and universities in a coordinated effort to develop the state’s knowledge workforce.
Newport Startup Session will provide college students in Rhode Island with the opportunity to work with early-stage ventures developing products and services for the higher education market. The nine days will be spent working in an experiential learning environment that will give participants an accelerated experience of what working at a startup is like. Participants will leave the program with an accessible mentor network and connections to students at nearby institutions who share their interest in innovation in higher education.
"It is extremely important for institutions of higher learning to continually identify the skillsets demanded in today's ever-evolving workforce and to prepare students with the tools to meet those demands," said Dr. Jane Gerety, Salve Regina President. "It is equally important that we foster networking relationships to bridge academia and the business community. We are proud to host the Newport Startup Session, which accomplishes all of these important objectives."
The program will conclude with a 1-day conference on June 30. The event will bring together members from academia and the business community to discuss strategies to leverage academic institutions for local economic impact.
"We're using the high density and diversity of colleges and universities in Rhode Island to develop a state-wide ecosystem for supporting entrepreneurial activity in the higher education sector," says Adam Leonard, program manager for bRIdge.
“We want to give back to the community by sparking passion for and interest in entrepreneurship among students while they are still in school and can help achieve great change,” adds Kyle Judah, CEO of RecoVend.
Information about the program is available at http://www.bridge.jobs/newport.
The Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Rhode Island is an alliance representing the eight independent institutions of higher learning within the state. Designed to address common interests and concerns of independent colleges and universities within the state, the association serves as the collective and unified voice of its member institutions.
RecoVend Inc., founded in August 2011, is a free resource that saves colleges time and money by streamlining the purchasing of goods and services. Its collaborative purchasing platform makes it easy for schools and administrators to work together to discover, research and buy the products they need at the best price possible.