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Resources to Support Tech Prototyping Now Available at Blackstone LaunchPad

Posted Jan. 13, 2014

Server space and small-scale hardware available for lending

enter photo description
The Blackstone LaunchPad program at Kent State University
now has equipment, including Arduinos and Raspberry Pi’s,
to help clients prototype their ideas.

In an effort to nurture a climate of making at Kent State University and increase the number of tech-based startups, Blackstone LaunchPad recently developed a technology strategy that includes the ability for clients to check out equipment, including Arduinos and Raspberry Pi’s, to prototype their ideas. 

“We have found a great demand from students to explore new technologies that are increasingly becoming popular due to the rise of the maker culture,” says Zach Mikrut, marketing manager of Blackstone LaunchPad at Kent State. “Our program is all about supporting making and idea generation, and having the proper tools and equipment for clients to experiment is just another extension of how we can support our entrepreneurs.”

Arduinos and Raspberry Pi’s are available for lending to clients. The new tech equipment will compliment the program’s existing MakerBot 3D-printer that has been available for clients to use since the summer. Clients can be assisted on how to use the technology from a dedicated student-employee trained on the equipment. For a complete list of technological resources available, visit www.kent.edu/blackstonelaunchpad/tools/index.cfm.

Additionally, the Blackstone LaunchPad program has entered into a partnership with Kent State’s Division of Information Services to provide clients AWS server space, for a limited time, to beta-test their website. This arrangement will allow technology-focused businesses the full ability to build out and test their platforms without incurring immediate financial barriers. Currently, one client is using this new service and will launch a new business later this spring.

The Blackstone LaunchPad program promotes entrepreneurship as a viable career path. Through meetings, mentoring, workshops and events, Blackstone LaunchPad assists Kent State students, faculty, staff and alumni to create new businesses or grow existing businesses in Northeast Ohio.  For more information, visit www.kent.edu/blackstonelaunchpad.