Tech Transfer eNews Blog
University-Industry Engagement Advisor

Comings and goings


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: June 12th, 2019

•  The University of Chicago (UChicago) Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation has hired Jay Schrankler, a tech transfer veteran who most recently headed up tech transfer efforts at the University of Minnesota, to serve as vice president.

In his new role, Schrankler will oversee the Polsky Center and work closely with university leaders to develop and implement a strategy to integrate entrepreneurship and technology commercialization initiatives across UChicago. He will also promote industry partnerships and help launch new entrepreneurial programs at the university’s international campuses in Hong Kong, London, Paris, Delhi and other outposts.

Schrankler previously served as associate vice president in the University of Minnesota’s Office for Technology Commercialization, where he helped turn the organization into a top-rated tech transfer office that has generated over $550 million in revenue over 10 years. He has also served in various senior executive management and global leadership positions at Honeywell.

“Jay’s appointment comes at an important time as the Polsky Center continues to expand its entrepreneurship education and technology commercialization support for faculty, staff, students, alumni and community entrepreneurs — both on campus and internationally,” says Bala Srinivasan, vice president for strategy and innovation, chief international officer and deputy provost at UChicago. “His extensive leadership experience and proven track record will allow us to move faster on our bold ambitions.”

Schrankler comments, “I am deeply honored to join the University of Chicago and serve as the new head of the Polsky Center. The university’s great reputation, coupled with the longtime success of the Polsky Center, provide a tremendous opportunity for the future. I’m eager to get to work harnessing the Polsky Center’s existing momentum and scaling it to entirely new levels.”

Source: UChicago News

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•  Vanderbilt University has named professor David Owens to serve as director of its Wond’ry innovation and entrepreneurship lab.

Owens has devoted his academic work to innovation, new product development and start-up management. He currently serves as faculty director for the Vanderbilt Accelerator-Summer Business Institute and has lent his expertise to companies including LEGO, Gibson Music, Nissan and Wrigley’s.

“From day one, Dave Owens has been a key faculty member for Vanderbilt’s cross-disciplinary hub of innovation,” says Susan Wente, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at Vanderbilt. “Dave’s nationally recognized expertise in innovation — along with his commitment for mentoring future innovators — make him the perfect choice to build on the Wond’ry’s early momentum and development.”

Owens says his main goal is to help students, faculty and staff by making it easier to find the tools, mentors and expertise necessary to make them better innovators. “We will also increase the Wond’ry’s connections to Vanderbilt’s research centers, while working in close partnership with the Center for Technology Transfer and Commercialization,” says Owens.

Source: Nashville Post

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•  The Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM) Foundation has selected Laura A. Schoppe, president of leading tech transfer company Fuentek, to serve as the new Board Chair.

The AUTM Foundation supports programs that benefit AUTM and the profession of technology transfer. Schoppe has previously served as AUTM’s vice president of strategic alliances. In her new position, she will work closely with staff on the organization’s Diversity and Inclusion efforts, its Global Professional Development initiative and Technology Transfer Career Training Program.

As president of Fuentek, Schoppe has led the company’s efforts to serve university, government, corporate and nonprofit research organizations throughout the U.S. as well as in the EU, the Middle East and Asia.

“Laura Schoppe is the best person to guide the Foundation’s rapidly expanding work,” says AUTM Foundation executive director Kelly Markey. “Her career aligns perfectly with the Foundation’s core initiatives — to educate, communicate, advocate and innovate.”

Source: fuentek

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