The world’s innovation landscape is changing. Innovation has become a fundamental prerequisite for sustainability that embraces not only the discovery of new ideas but also implementable research solutions to societal and market requirements. Addressing this shift requires STEM professionals who are simultaneously excellent researchers, capable innovators, and skilled leaders. Oregon State University piloted and tested a team-based, experiential curriculum that simultaneously integrates basic scientific research with market research and with professional skill development and practice. Learning outcome and evaluation data were used to determine if this transformative curriculum developed researchers with the desired attributes to contribute to the national STEM agenda.
The program found that, overall, students who participated in the program realized the value of thinking about their scientific research from a market-need perspective. Students perceived enhanced interest in and understanding of societal and market insights related to their own and other’s research. Additionally, students developed professional skills in communication, team collaboration, innovation, and entrepreneurial skills.
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Sciencemag.org Innovation, entrepreneurship, promotion, and tenure