One of the strongest competitive qualities we possess as Americans is our ability to innovate and develop creative solutions to complex problems. The University of Florida’s (UF) Innovation Academy (IA) facilitates innovative student thinking, creativity, and the creation of student partnerships with start up businesses and other entrepreneurs.
The goal of the IA is to prepare students for the challenges of living and working in the 21st-century economy, in a future where the nation continues to hold its competitive advantages in science, education, art, medicine, and business solutions in a global marketplace. In 2012, we had not enrolled students in the program as we were putting the final touches on the curriculum and building the student experience.
We have come a long way in our seven years:
IA has built a signature program for UF students interested in innovation.
We are gaining a reputation with local start-ups, and small and large corporations for producing students who find solutions and generate new ideas.
Bringing together academia, industry and the start-up community is a recipe for meaningful economic growth for Gainesville, the State Florida, and the world. Part of our vision continues to include preparing our students for the 21st-century economy and opening up the innovation ecosystem that exists here in Gainesville so students can leverage all the best resources to meet their challenge(s).
We remain one of the most exciting initiatives at the University of Florida that continues to grow and it is critical we keep the momentum going. We continue to focus on providing excellent student learning and high impact experiences inside and outside of the classroom to produce the best innovators who tackle the tough challenges and produce results. We are always looking for forwardthinking students who want to explore innovation and take advantage of the entire Gainesville innovation ecosystem.
Dr. Jeff Citty serves as the founding director for the Innovation Academy and has over eighteen years of experience in higher education in building programmatic solutions to help solve issues in higher education. Dr. Citty provides vision, leadership and strategic direction in the development and attainment of the Innovation Academy priorities. As the founding director of the program, he oversees all curricular and co-curricular aspects of the program as well as building the institutional infrastructure for the program. Dr. Citty teaches the Creativity-in-Context and Senior Project courses and continues research in retention and advising.