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InnoVention Center to launch at UA Phoenix

Courtesy City of Phoenix

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and  Dr. Frederic Zenhausern, a professor of basic medical sciences, discuss the InnoVention lab. Dr. Zenhausen will spearhead the innovative technologies and ideas that emanate from InnoVention.

The City of Phoenix and University of Arizona are collaborating to launch a new medical technology accelerator program at the Phoenix Biomedical Campus located in downtown Phoenix.  

The new center, called InnoVention, was proposed by Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and will include students from the university’s medical sciences, law, engineering and business programs.

“With this exciting partnership, the best and brightest across industries will work side-by-side as breakthroughs are happening, accelerating the process of turning ideas into reality to improve health and save lives,” Stanton said in a prepared statement.

InnoVention will be a partnership between the UA’s College of Medicine-Phoenix, College of Engineering, Eller College of Management and McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship. It will provide a dedicated space, and program, for students to turn ideas into reality through devices, businesses or health policies.

The center will be one of 13 school accelerators in the U.S. and will include laboratories, fabrication equipment and business consulting services.

Stanton said Phoenix is “proud to invest in the bio-sciences and innovation” and that they provide high-paying jobs in markets that continue to grow.

Dr. Guy Reed, dean of the University of Arizona College of Medicine in Phoenix, said he is “grateful” for the support for InnoVention provided by the City of Phoenix.

“This will advance the mission of the Phoenix Biomedical Campus to translate scientific discoveries into new products, devices and algorithms which can improve the health of Arizonans as well as to develop Phoenix into a center for a biomedical innovation to advance our economy,” Reed said in a statement.

The Phoenix City Council unanimously approved $35,000 in seed money during a meeting on Feb. 21 to offer a two-semester InnoVention and Entrepreneurship in Medicine course. 

The money will support the costs of prototypes, staff mentoring of students and practical course curriculum.

Dr. Frederic Zenhausern, a professor of basic medical sciences who will help lead InnoVention, said the center will be accessed by graduate students enrolled in the entrepreneurship and medicine course.

He said the course will provide students with the opportunity to get training and experience in the “invention process, design and prototyping, as well as scale-up manufacturing and regulatory compliance processes.”

Zenhausern said the course will include lectures and seminars with a major focus on InnoVention laboratory training. 

The course will also feature different aspects of entrepreneurial training for business development and possible corporate startup training. The program will select a cohort of about 12 students to be enrolled in the class. 

Zenhausern said InnoVention is targeting a start date in Fall 2018. 

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