For six consecutive years, TechConnect has served as a bridge between the Department of Defense (DoD) and the latest technological innovations. Start-ups, agencies and investors are able to connect in order to find solutions to the biggest problems plaguing military personnel. Each year at the annual Defense TechConnect Summit, hundreds of innovators have the opportunity to submit their technologies not only for recognition, but for the advancement of national security. The summit is a unique event that provides technological innovators with exposure that would be hard to get elsewhere. The various innovation challenges that participants aim to meet include categories such as digital transformation, critical infrastructure, autonomous systems, smart operations and warfighter focused technologies. Though many of the pitches submitted to the selection committee are considered to be some of the best technologies in the world, only the top 15 percent of innovations receive a TechConnect Defense Innovation Award. This year, nanoscale research and development startup Impulse Technology LLC was one of the select awardees.

The American Dream of starting your own, successful business is alive and well at Penn State with the tenth anniversary of Global Entrepreneurship Week.  The annual event, expanded this year from a week to ten days to mark the ten years, connects student innovators and community entrepreneurs with collaborators, mentors and investors to create a fertile environment for the development of new and innovative businesses.

In June, Centre County residents and businesses received some welcome news: Penn State and State College Borough was chosen to host the 2019 International Town & Gown Association’s City and University Relations Conference. The annual event, which aims to foster ’town-gown’ collaboration between select institutions of higher learning and their local municipalities, is expected to bring in 300 to 400 visitors for three days next May—so it could mean big things for the area.

Even the Centre County’s first major snowstorm of the season could not dampen the celebratory atmosphere of the 100-plus university officials, business leaders, government representatives and community members who gathered at Penn State’s Innovation Park on November 15 to mark the grand opening of Morgan Advanced Materials’ new multi-million dollar Carbon Science Centre of Excellence at Penn State’s Innovation Park.  The new Centre of Excellence will pioneer research into carbon materials and technologies, drawing on the resources of Penn State and its faculty in a truly collaborative partnership that is the latest success in the University’s Invent Penn State initiative.