Innovation & Entrepreneurship:

Bold explorations that bring the future into focus

Academic learning is founded on mastering what is already known. This is essential, for only when one understands the principles of a subject can they be appropriately applied. Yet at Wentworth, the arrow is always pointing forward. Our exceptional academics provide the raw materials for new discoveries, and our students are encouraged to leverage what they learn to identify and serve unmet needs, design more efficient and effective solutions for existing problems, and build new products, systems, and businesses that will benefit society.

Our world faces a diversity of challenges—technical, medical, economic, environmental, structural, sustainable—that have a profound impact on our daily lives. Wentworth provides opportunities for students to identify and engage with these issues, generating innovative ideas and solutions that make the world a better place. Because such solutions are inherently complex and multifaceted, the very effort to innovate inspires students to collaborate with peers and faculty from other majors and disciplines.

The result of this effort might be original research to present at conferences, prototypes fabricated and constructed in our studios, or new business concepts that can apply for funding from the Institute. At Wentworth, we believe that while not everyone has a career goal of being an entrepreneur, all students can and should learn to adopt an entrepreneurial mindset so they can think creatively and act boldly in the work they choose to do. It’s about fostering new ideas, not just new businesses.

Accelerate, Wentworth Innovation + Entrepreneurship Center was conceived as a logical extension of Wentworth’s already existing strengths and disciplines to drive thought partnerships, interdisciplinary engagement, and out-of-the-box ideas among students, alumni, industry, and the Boston community. Being in Boston means that students are learning and working in the midst of one of the country’s leading hubs of innovation, home to a thriving and fast-paced start-up ecosystem that includes research centers, venture capitalists, and business and technology experts.

ACCELERATE FUELS INNOVATION

Accelerate, Wentworth Innovation + Entrepreneurship Center builds innovative thinking and entrepreneurial confidence among students. Accelerate extends Wentworth’s existing strengths and disciplines to drive thought partnership and interdisciplinary engagement while connecting students with mentors, alumni, and professionals who inspire them to learn, explore, push their ideas, follow their passion, and grow. Rather than teaching entrepreneurship from a theoretical perspective, Accelerate embraces the “maker culture” and focuses on producing solutions in the physical world while also providing mentoring, workshops, and connections to industry. To date, Accelerate has engaged over 4,000 participants through events and programming. More than 800 students have submitted
over 600 ideas as part of interdisciplinary teams, and have been awarded a total of $203,000 in funding to develop their early stage ideas. Accelerate offers four main programs to all Wentworth students:

Startup Challenge – A platform for interdisciplinary teams to nurture their passion from idea to prototype while expanding their knowledge and pitching for gap funding (up to $10,000) to make it real.

Accelerate offers three main programs to all Wentworth students:

Social Innovation Lab – A 12-week program for six co-op students from six different disciplines, providing an immersive experience partnering with numerous external organizations to address large-scale social challenges impacting individuals and communities.

External Collaborations – Bootcamps for civic and service innovation bringing together students across Boston, design thinkers, experts, and community partners from diverse disciplines to ideate around a challenge facing the city.

Innovate! – Innovation immersions implemented in classrooms and at other engagement points across campus and in the curriculum to expose students to the mindset and competencies relevant for innovation + entrepreneurship.