By connecting students, faculty, and staff to resources, mentors, and work spaces to put their ideas into action for impact, the Innovation at CC program brings together the skills of the liberal arts — creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, problem solving, and communication — with CC’s innovative spirit and commitment to making the world a better place.

Innovation at CC is up and running. An advisory board, made up of faculty and staff, supports students as they take their ideas to the next step.

The program hosts innovators-in-residence, workshops, and lectures; offers a digital marketing crash course; and helps students who want to launch a business or social innovation programming venture through The Big Idea pitch competition. The Big Idea, started in 2013, is one of six programs affiliated with the new initiative that are already in full swing at the college.

In September 2016, Dez Stone Menendez ’02 became the director of CC’s innovation program. Prior, she founded the Possibility Room, which began as a startup incubator in Seattle, and she served as a consultant to artisan and trade-based businesses.

“Innovation at Colorado College provides students with the opportunity to take risks and test their ideas,” Menendez says.

Patrick Bultema, who formerly led the innovation program, will lead the Big Idea program in a consultancy role during the 2016–2017 academic year.

By the Numbers

“Innovative Minds” speakers came to campus to share their startup experiences in 2015–16, including Shannon Galpin, founder of Mountain2Mountain; Teju Ravilochan, co-founder of the Unreasonable Institute; Terry Winograd ’66, professor emeritus of computer science at Stanford University; Steve Kaczmarek ’89, co-founder of Fat-Bike LLC; and Chris Onan, co-founder of Galvanize

Over 40 years combined experience among the innovators in residence featured during 2015–16

$8.5 million
An anonymous donor committed $8.5 million in December 2015 to support the innovation program’s development, including $6 million toward an innovation facility and $2.5 million to fund and permanently endow a chaired professorship in innovation.

Learn more about supporting Innovation at Colorado College.