The Trustees of the Burton D. Morgan Foundation graciously approved a grant to support and name the Marty Erbaugh (I3) Lab in the Design Innovation Hub.

For this program, I3 stand for the following three words: Ideate • Innovate • Incubate.

The Marty Erbaugh (I3) Lab supports a "hack to hatch" concept and series of small spaces in the DI HUB managed by Kent State’s NEO LaunchNET and the Design Innovation Team. The I3 Lab program will host student teams with access to mini-grant funding, short-term dedicated space (typically a maximum of 9 weeks) and support from the LaunchNET team, to assist teams in due diligence activities to determine if they should bring their ideas into a formal incubation environment (i.e. launch a venture).

The I3 Lab spaces enable an entrepreneurship and innovation accelerator program environment in which student projects that result from DI courses, hackathons and other challenge-based competitions could lead to potentially-marketable concepts or products.

Marty Erbaugh was a longtime advisor to LaunchNET Kent State University. He believed in supporting entrepreneurs of all ages. The Marty Erbaugh I3 Lab will be abuzz with the frenetic entrepreneurial spirit key to any aspiring business founder's success. Student projects that result from Design Innovation courses, hackathons, and other challenge-based competitions will be grown here with intentional programming and supports so that these ideas can be developed into potentially marketable concepts or products.

More information about Kent State’s NEO LaunchNET can be found here:

Responses to frequently asked questions about the I3 Lab program are below:

During what timeframe will students receive I3 Lab support? Is this a summer thing? Will there be students supported throughout the year in this space?

Support for the I3 Lab program could potentially be provided at any time, but is most likely to be concentrated around the summer session (as an alternate to starting a summer or post-graduate job, etc.)

Do students have to fill out an application?

Yes; there will be an application process that will be promoted and reviewed through a small collaborative team from both the DI TEAM and the KSU LaunchNET.

Will students be expected to complete a DI course before participating in I3 Lab or other co-curricular programs, such as the pop-up challenges?

Yes; to be eligible for I3 Lab support, students (teams) would need to have either taken, at a minimum, one DI Course or the DI Fellows cohort training and to have participated in at least one of our DI challenge-based events.

What is the maximum amount of dollars that you expect student I3 Lab projects would receive?

Maximum funding would be $10K, but most would likely be funded in the $1,500-5,000 range.

Who will monitor the students? Who will staff the I3 Lab space?

The executive directors of Design Innovation and the KSU LaunchNET will be the primary monitors/evaluators for the students who have been awarded I3 Lab program support.