– Florida Tech’s College of Engineering and School of Management are teaming up with
the business community to create Florida Tech Start, a business accelerator for entrepreneurs and high-tech companies. An official announcement and ribbon
cutting will take place at an Oct. 2, 2003 joint meeting of the college’s board of advisors and the school’s board of overseers. The ribbon cutting will be
at 9:00 a.m. in the first floor lobby of the F.W. Olin Engineering Complex.
The mission of Florida Tech Start is to train and develop leaders who will make high-tech ventures successful. In partnership with government organizations
and a network of qualified professional service providers, Florida Tech Start will coordinate networking, special seminars, training, and workshops for
entrepreneurs. Florida Tech Start will also serve as the contact point for entrepreneurs to collaborate with university faculty members or students in
using specialized university laboratories, instruments or technical services.
Florida Tech President Anthony J. Catanese believes the new project further strengthens Florida Tech’s commitment to high-tech business and industry.
“Florida Tech Start will become the premier center for entrepreneurship on the Space Coast, and an integral part of the community’s effort to build a high
tech economy,” said Catanese.
Dean Ron Bailey, College of Engineering, and Dean Tim Hollingsworth, School of Management, believe the combined strengths
of the two academic units will create synergy.
“Working with our regional partners, we will ensure that Florida Tech Start becomes a solid east coast anchor for regional economic development,” said
Support for Florida Tech Start is provided by a grant through the University of Central Florida from the National Science Foundation under the Partnerships
for Innovation program, and by a grant from the Florida High Tech Corridor Council.
“We welcome Florida Tech Start as the latest member of a network of business accelerators and high-tech incubators stretching across the High Tech
Corridor. This new accelerator joins already highly successful incubators at UCF and USF,” said Randy Berridge, president of the Florida High Tech Corridor
Lynda Weatherman, CEO of the Economic Development Commission of the Space Coast, has worked with the university during the planning of Florida Tech Start.
“Florida Tech Start will help in our efforts to attract and grow high-tech companies that diversify our local economy and create the high-paying jobs we
need to sustain economic growth,” said Weatherman.
Florida Tech’s partners include the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, the Florida High Tech Corridor Council, Central Florida
Innovation Corporation, the Small Business Development Center of Brevard Community College, and the University of Central Florida’s Center of
Entrepreneurship and Technology Commercialization (CENTECOM).