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Loyola U Takes Space in Chicago Digital Incubator

A Chicago university has joined several other institutions in setting up a workspace in a digital incubator to put its students and faculty in direct contact with area entrepreneurs. Loyola University Chicago has begun working with 1871, which houses 325 digital startups.

The name of the non-profit organization refers to the year when Chicago suffered its "great" fire, after which engineers, architects and investors came together to design and construct a new city. The entrepreneurial hub is located in Chicago's iconic Merchandise Mart, a structure built in the 1920s and LEED certified in 2007.

Other schools that have already set up space in 1871 include Northwestern University, the University of Illinois, the University of Chicago and the Illinois Institute of Technology.

The Loyola workspace will also allow 1871 to put its members in contact with Loyola faculty who are interested in serving as mentors. One new project has connected instructors from the university's schools of law, communication and business with people who received "diversity" scholarships from 1871. These recipients have met for several months with six faculty members for coaching. This summer, high school students participating in Loyola's "Pre-College Summer Scholars" program may also be taken on a field trip to 1871 as part of week-long camps that explore leadership and innovation.

"As a university, we are committed to connecting our students with opportunities both within, and beyond, Loyola's campuses," said Provost John Pelissero. "This opportunity to partner with 1871 and its entrepreneurial community benefits all of our students--undergraduate and graduate--and demonstrates our commitment to preparing students for a lifetime of leadership and innovation."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning. She can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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