PHILADELPHIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The University City Keystone Innovation Zone (UC KIZ) received an $85,000 grant from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to increase its impact on entrepreneurship in the Greater Philadelphia region by formally aligning the UC KIZ with the University City Science Center’s strategic initiative, Quorum. The award came through the Ben Franklin Technology Development Authority (BFTDA) and the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED).
“As the fiscal sponsor of the UC KIZ, the Science Center is enthusiastic about synergizing the KIZ and Quorum initiatives to create a stronger ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship in University City and the Greater Philadelphia region”
In addition to aligning existing programming under the Quorum umbrella, the award will allow the UC KIZ to offer:
- an Access to Capital program designed to educate and prepare companies in raising capital
- a micro grant program providing much-needed financial support to early-stage companies, and
- an internship program that will offer UC KIZ companies high school interns for six weeks during the summer
“As the fiscal sponsor of the UC KIZ, the Science Center is enthusiastic about synergizing the KIZ and Quorum initiatives to create a stronger ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship in University City and the Greater Philadelphia region,” says Science Center President and CEO, Stephen S. Tang, PhD. “Quorum is designed to strengthen the region’s culture of technology commercialization by creating a forum for entrepreneurs, innovators and their supporting community to convene, interact, network and exchange ideas. Aligning UC KIZ programming under the Quorum umbrella will make both programs stronger.”
The new Access to Capital Program will have three components, each taking a different approach to addressing companies’ funding needs. The first is series of seminars and workshops open to all UC KIZ companies that will help them learn about the various aspects of obtaining and leveraging capital.
Access to Capital will offer selected UC KIZ companies scholarships to attend venture fairs and similar pitching opportunities. The final component is a mentoring program that will give selected companies an opportunity to work with business development and communication experts to develop a “pitch package” to better prepare them for meetings and pitch events.
This award is the fifth round of funding received by the UC KIZ through the DCED and BFTDA and the first under the new Competitive Grant guidelines that allows the network of 29 KIZs to compete for up to $100,000 each.
About the University City Keystone Innovation Zone
The University City Keystone Innovation Zone is a partnership of BioAdvance, Drexel University, Thomas Jefferson University, University City Science Center, University of Pennsylvania, University of the Sciences in Philadelphia and The Wistar Institute. It was established in 2004 by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as a Keystone Innovation Zone, a geographically designated zone designed to create a “knowledge neighborhood” that develops technology business communities by aligning talent and resources. UC KIZ partners are committed to working together to ensure that life sciences technology opportunities are developed and supported to maximize the potential of university research, start-up companies and international companies seeking to locate in the region. For more information about the University City Keystone Innovation Zone, call (215) 966-6156 or visit www.uckiz.com.
About the Science Center
The University City Science Center accelerates technology commercialization, regional economic development, and the market availability of life-enhancing scientific breakthroughs by bringing together innovations, scientists, entrepreneurs, funding, laboratory facilities, and business services. Established in 1963 and headquartered in Philadelphia, PA, the Science Center was the first, and remains the largest, urban research park in the United States. Graduate organizations and current residents of the University City Science Center’s Port business incubators have created more than 15,000 jobs that remain in the Greater Philadelphia region today and contribute more than $9 billion to the regional economy annually. For more information about the Science Center, go towww.sciencecenter.org.
Quorum is a strategic initiative of the University City Science Center that is designed to unite the region’s entrepreneurship and innovation communities through a central gathering space and related programs that enable idea generators to meet, share and learn, promoting the success of companies, individuals and the Philadelphia region.