Student Selected as "Inventors and Innovators" Ambassador

photo of Pennington

Junior Andrew Pennington, of Corbin, has been selected as the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance student ambassador for Eastern Kentucky University.

NCIIA Student Ambassadors work to create networks and events that inspire university entrepreneurs, encourage them to become involved in NCIIA programs and activities, and support them to create inventions and innovations that have a social benefit.

Pennington, a public relations major, will attend a weeklong program in August with peers from universities across the country to develop ideas that he can bring back to EKU to encourage entrepreneurship activity among students. Class size for the program is limited.

“I applied for the program because I believe in entrepreneurship,” said Pennington, who won the 2011 Excellence in Entrepreneurship Collegiate Business Concept Challenge for his own business idea and recently launched company, Contractor Yard Sale. “I believe in it not only as a very real option for myself during and after college, but as an option that many others should consider as well.” Pennington’s company is located in the Accelerator, EKU’s Business Incubator in the College of Business and Technology, and he is working on another business that will launch shortly.

Pennington expects to gain valuable, formal training in effective ways to promote entrepreneurship on campus while attending the national conference. “I feel with the training, I can bring to EKU a renewed sense of passion for innovation and new progressive business ideas,” he said.

Ian Mooers, executive director of EKU’s Center for Economic Development, Entrepreneurship and Technology, which is sponsoring Pennington’s participation in the programwith regional stewardship monies, said that when Pennington learned about NCIIA Student Ambassadors program, “he was immediately interested and could already envision ways that he could raise awareness of entrepreneurship on campus. Too many of our students leave the service region seeking opportunity in other places, and youth entrepreneurship is one way to build that economic opportunity here.”

Now in its third year, the NCIIA Student Ambassador program provides participants with valuable experience in marketing, program planning, networking and managing projects and offers the opportunity to be part of a renowned, national program and a network of students from universities and colleges around the country.

The ambassador in turn brings that training back to campus with nationally coordinated innovation activities and an early inside track to new resources. EKU’s CEDET is an NCIIA member, which allows any EKU faculty or student to apply for NCIIA grants, as well as receive discounts to the NCIIA annual conference. Call 859-622-2334  for more information about services offered by CEDET.

Published on May 07, 2012