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Shawnee State University


Portsmouth, OH

Build to Scale Program

Venture Challenge

Project Name

Project LEAP: Launching our Entrepreneurship Accelerator Program

Award Amount

Federal Share

Local Match



This EDA investment will enhance Shawnee State University’s (SSU) Kricker Innovation Hub programming and support entrepreneurs from ideation through commercialization by creating an intensive, place-based accelerator. Building a programmatic roadmap for scalable technology development that eliminates barriers to entrepreneurship will foster regional entrepreneurship ecosystem development, leading to the creation of new businesses in southern Ohio.

With university resources and recent investments in the Kricker Innovation Hub, this project is uniquely positioned with physical, programmatic, and human assets to scale up quickly and serve as the leading center for a technology-based entrepreneurship ecosystem in southern Ohio. As a pioneer in applied motion capture research in the early 2000s, SSU has established has a nationally ranked Game Design Program and also serves as a leading institution in digital and immersive technology. This alignment with the ongoing explosion of coding, computer engineering, gaming, and e-sports has placed the Hub at the forefront of entrepreneurship, innovation, and creativity in the region.

Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE)

Build To Scale (B2S)
formerly Regional Innovation Strategies Program (RIS)

SPRINT Challenge

STEM Talent Challenge

Accelerate R2 Network Challenge

National Advisory Council on Innovation & Entrepreneurship (NACIE)

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