Maryland Innovation Initiative (MII) Invests in Three Pilot Programs at Bowie State University and Frostburg State University

 Nearly $330,000 in funding toward university entrepreneurship programs

COLUMBIA, Md. (August 22, 2023) – TEDCO, Maryland’s economic engine for technology companies, announced that the Maryland Innovation Initiative (MII) has invested in three new pilot programs for Bowie State University (BSU) and Frostburg State University (FSU).

The MII was launched in 2012 as a partnership between the State of Maryland and five Maryland academic research institutions (Johns Hopkins University; Morgan State University; University of Maryland, Baltimore; University of Maryland, Baltimore County; University of Maryland, College Park). The program helps foster the transition of promising technologies discovered and developed out of Qualifying Universities to the commercial sector, where they can be further developed into products and services that meet identified market needs.

“After 10 successful years of helping to bring numerous university technologies to market, we’re very excited to expand the MII’s reach to these two additional Maryland comprehensive universities, both of which are renowned for their entrepreneurship and innovation,” said Arti Santhanam, Ph.D., MII executive director. “We greatly look forward to building these new relationships and serving these diverse communities of innovators and entrepreneurs.”

The following is more information about each pilot program:

Bowie State University LogoEntrepreneurship XTreme Pilot (Bowie State University)
MII Investment: $77,540

The BSU Entrepreneurship XTreme Pilot will provide students with an immersive experiential learning opportunity and offer a variety of technical support services to startup founders and existing businesses interested in tech-based ventures. Under this pilot program, a team of eight BSU students will be matched with interested founders and business owners for 2-to-3-month projects, which may entail website development, software development, software testing, and other tech-based support services. With the MII’s investment, the program aims to jumpstart 2-3 companies and use the lessons learned to build out the program for scale.

Frostburg State University logoBobcat Innovation Launch Pad (Frostburg State University)
MII Investment: $100,000

The Bobcat Innovation Launch Pad, managed by FSU  in partnership with Deloitte, will encourage student teams from multiple disciplines to develop commercially viable technology-based solutions to vexing societal challenges, with a focus on climate change and renewable energy. Structured as a 3-day event that blends elements of a traditional hackathon with that of a business pitch competition, the program will attract approximately 50 students with a draw of a small cash prize to foster development of the winning ideas. MII’s funding will help launch this innovation and entrepreneurship initiative.

Regional Cyber Operations Center Feasibility Study (Frostburg State University)
MII Investment: $150,000

A Regional Cyber Security Operations Center (RSOC) is an entity that provides continuous operational IT security by monitoring, assessing, preventing, and responding to threats to protected IT systems. FSU in partnership with Deloitte, seeks to study the feasibility of establishing a RSOC for Western Maryland, which will serve to protect the region’s businesses, non-profit organizations, and local government entities from the threat of cyber breaches. The study will explore the resources needed for the launch and the potential educational workforce and economic impact of an RSOC which will strengthen the role of FSU as an anchor institution for the region. Results will be used to further develop a pilot program for Western Maryland that could be replicated in other parts of the State.

“It’s an honor to be able to help university-based entrepreneurs, particularly students, find their footing and thrive,” said Renée Winsky, MII Board Chair. “These three investments represent a major milestone for the MII and TEDCO as we expand our efforts to fuel innovation across all of Maryland, fostering company formation and growth that will also bear future job opportunities for our communities.”

For more information about the MII please visit

To learn about the additional funding opportunities provided by TEDCO visit

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