Loyola University Maryland is planning to expand its entrepreneurship and innovation programs after receiving a $3 million donation.
Donors Nick and Sue Simon, who are Loyola alums, previously donated $1 million in 2018 to help build the school’s entrepreneurship center which, after their most recent donation, will now be named the Nick and Susie Simon Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship.
The endowed gift provides needed financial security for the center, allowing current programs, such as its accelerator, to continue indefinitely, said Wendy Bolger, the center’s director.
“Now that we have secured this base for an endowment, it’ll be even easier for us to continue to go out and raise additional funds to grow the accelerator,” she said.
The Baltipreneurs Accelerator, a cohort-based venture development program for Loyola students and other business owners, has so far graduated 21 startups, with companies ranging from edtech, to restaurants, to consumer goods. The demo day top prize in 2022, the second cohort since the incubator launched in 2019, went to Chesapeake Collection, a clothing company that donates a portion of its revenue to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
The university is also hoping to create a biotech incubator, which would enable students to conduct research in support of existing startups, have access to internships and take classes from biotech entrepreneurs, Bolger said. She hopes the center would also provide a wetlab space for companies.
“Seeing these companies firsthand provides a unique learning experience for students,” Michael Tangrea, a Loyola professor and the founder of the BIoIncubator at Sinai Hospital, said in a statement. “We are fortunate to have the Simon Center to support these types of concepts and help them become a reality with a lasting impact not only at Loyola, but also on the greater community.”
A previous version of this story said the Baltipreneurs Accelerator launched in 2020. The program actually began in 2019.
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