Senior bioengineering major named Epicenter University Innovation Fellow
Justin Shaw, a senior majoring in bioengineering, has been named an Epicenter University Innovation Fellow. This national program empowers student leaders to increase campus engagement with innovation, entrepreneurship, creativity and design thinking. Shaw joins current Clemson University Innovation Fellows Connor Bolick and Breanne Przestrzelski.
University Innovation Fellows work to ensure that their peers gain the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to compete in the economy of the future and make a positive impact on the world. Fellows design innovation spaces, start entrepreneurship organizations, host experiential learning events and work with faculty to develop new courses.
Shaw has been serving as assistant director with the Design and Entrepreneurship Network (The DEN), which is supported by the College of Engineering and Science. The DEN connects student inventors and entrepreneurs with industry experts ranging from angel investors to patent attorneys. They gather in weekly meetings across campus, where students pitch their ideas so that the group can brainstorm ways to make them better and take them to market. Through his leadership role in The DEN, Shaw has developed skills in effective communication and strategic leadership. He has seen DEN companies receive over $1 million of backing. When asked his plans after school, Shaw says “I am going to operate a company that encourages people to develop their ideas through innovation and entrepreneurship.”
“With the addition of this new cohort, we’ve trained over 450 students at 130 institutions in the last four years,” said Humera Fasihuddin, co-leader of the University Innovation Fellows program. “Faculty and administrators are funding a consistent supply of students to go through the program because they can count on Fellows to make a big impact. Fellows understand the big picture and use their resourcefulness, creativity and national network to make measurable gains on campus, both in the number of resources and the students served by the innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem.”
About Epicenter: Epicenter is funded by the National Science Foundation and directed by Stanford University and VentureWell. Epicenter’s mission is to empower U.S. undergraduate engineering students to bring their ideas to life for the benefit of the nation’s economy and society. To do this, Epicenter helps students combine their technical skills, their ability to develop innovative technologies that solve important problems, and an entrepreneurial mindset and skillset. Epicenter’s three core initiatives are the University Innovation Fellows program for undergraduate engineering students and their peers; the Pathways to Innovation Program for institutional teams of faculty and university leaders; and a research program that informs activities and contributes to national knowledge on entrepreneurship and engineering education.