Trine, Sturgis, MI organize team for innovation

July 10, 2013

ANGOLA, Ind. – Trine University's Innovation One is teaming with Sturgis Improvement Association and Sturgis Economic Development Corporation, both in Michigan, to  help with the research and development necessary to commercialize new technologies or expand into new technology markets.

The Sturgis Improvement Association (SIA) offers a Technology Innovation Grant Fund that provides funding to Sturgis companies for research and development and related activities. Trine's Innovation One (i1), an incubator to bring new ideas to market for new or existing businesses, can provide both the resources and expertise to partner with Sturgis businesses.

"We have an exciting partnership with Trine to assist with the SIA's Technology Innovation Grant Fund.  And, while other colleges and universities are eligible to assist businesses as partners in the program, Trine has consistently demonstrated commitment and dedication to our community by working closely with manufacturers and its opening of a Sturgis branch campus," said John Wiedlea, president of SIA/Sturgis EDC. "Trine's i1 program is perfectly aligned with the Technology Innovation Fund and the goal of Sturgis 2022 to be a premier community for entrepreneurs and to be a leader in the region in creating quality jobs through business expansion and attraction."

Sturgis 2022 is a vision for the next decade focused on generating positive improvements in the Sturgis community. It is a collaborative effort of residents and community leaders committed to making Sturgis better, according to the Sturgis 2022 website.

Trine's i1, launched last summer, has collaborated on 30 projects by providing research, testing and analysis. Burr Oak Tool in Sturgis is one of the companies that has worked with i1.

Burr Oak contracted with i1 for reverse engineering and an inspection project in June 2012 and August 2012, respectively. Burr Oak's most recent project with i1 is a heat transfer study that is scheduled for completion Aug. 1.

"This initiative illustrates Trine's ongoing efforts to create jobs and aid in economic development in the region," said Earl D. Brooks II, Trine president. "Innovation One offers expertise and top-quality laboratories that are assets for this region and the new relationship with SIA/Sturgis EDC is a great example of how a partnership with Trine can be a benefit."

On Monday, Trine announced that its partnership with Elevate Ventures includes having Robert Clark, an entrepreneur-in-residence, on Trine's campus. Elevate Ventures, a non-profit entrepreneurial venture capital firm with offices throughout Indiana, moved its office to Trine's Ford Hall from the Northwest Indiana Innovation Center in Fort Wayne. The office will be moved to Trine's Jim and Joan Bock Center for Innovation and Biomedical Engineering; the center is currently being constructed and on schedule for completion in August.

For more information about Innovation One, visit

For more information about SIA and Sturgis EDC, visit and click on economic development on the left of the page.

For more information about Sturgis 2022, visit

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