The IIT Invention Center
- F New
engineers coming from school have little idea of what
makes a successful product. They have to be re-trained by
- F Standard
Engineering programs often damage the students' natural
creativity because they emphasize analysis (calculations)
over synthesis (concept).
- F Many
naturally creative people are repelled by Engineering
studies. Talent is wasted.
- F Current
project-based courses do not go far enough to remedy the
- F Teach
Engineering not as applied science but as one of the
Arts, that which uses physical phenomena to create
something new and useful.
- F Do this
while allowing the students to obtain accredited 4-year
Bachelors or Masters.
- F Attract
students to Engineering before they finish high school.
- F Undergraduates
take at least three three-credit Engineering studios,
from 2nd year on.
- F This
course sequence is undertaken as "interprofessional
projects" (nine credits) or as a "specialized
minor" (fifteen credits, replacing some elective
courses) of the standard, ABET-accredited Engineering
program. It does not add time to their graduation.
- F They work
on their own inventions. Team projects are also possible.
They are coached on-site by studio professors and
- F A regular
seminar is held where all the aspects of creative problem
solving, marketing, patenting, etc. are explained.
- F The
students' work is evaluated through prototypes, reports
and presentations. Other outcomes such as prizes,
patents, and positive commercialization results also
- F One- week
camps for selected high school students.
- F At the
"IIT Invention Center," which has the essential
facilities for information gathering, computing,
prototyping, testing, and communications.
- F Interim
location now. Will be ten thousand square feet, divided
among several connected labs and shops. A large open
portion reserved for the students' personal work benches.
- F To be
expanded as the program grows and start-up corporations
are created nearby.
- F IIT
Engineering and Science students. Other students can sign
up for elective course credit. High school students
- F Full-time
faculty from the ranks of IIT's current departments, plus
other studio professors who work part-time at the Center.
Staff for prototyping, shop training, and maintenance.
- F Industrial
advisors recruited from Chicago companies. Others by
- F Board of
Advisors drawn from IIT trustees, faculty, notable
inventors and entrepreneurs.
- F First
course offered Sept.-95. Invention Center to be fully set
up in 2000-01.
- F High
school camp begun in Jan.- 96.