Innovation will return once again to the site
of the former Sanford, Varner & Co. Factory Building
at Third & Chillicothe Streets. Find out more about the building's history here.

We are working to encourage the creation of new business in our community.

Shawnee State University will be a leader in regional entrepreneurism when our new Kricker Innovation Hub opens on Chillicothe Street in downtown Portsmouth.  This is a landmark facility that will promote entrepreneurship, innovation, and creativity in the region.

The Kricker Innovation Hub will be housed in existing property that the institution owns in the Portsmouth downtown main street area, immediately adjacent to campus.  This property will be renovated to showcase state-of-the-art technology including a physical delivery point for OARnet, immersive technology lab resources, and contemporary study and project rooms where students can work with faculty mentors, business leaders, and community members to conduct research, collaborate on business ventures, and develop team-building and leadership skills.

This shared campus-community facility will also serve as an outlet for (1) student research and proof of concept development, and (2) outreach programming supplied by our university resources and existing partners, including small business development workshops, mentoring and coaching, and commercialization.  The physical facility will include collaborative workspace, state-of-art video conferencing and high-speed data access, tech development maker-space, and pre-seed incubation suites.

We are pleased to have a number of distinguished individuals serving on our Innovation Hub Advisory Board.  View the list of advisory board members.


We are a Member of NACCE

NACCE LogoShawnee State University belongs to the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE). This is a member organization of over 300 community colleges representing nearly 2,000 staff. Presidents, educators, administrators and center directors are focused on inciting entrepreneurship in their community and on their campus.

NACCE has two main goals:

  1. Empower the college to approach the business of leading a community college with an entrepreneurial mindset; and
  2. Grow the community college's role in supporting job creation and entrepreneurs in their local ecosystem.

For more information, visit www.nacce.com.

Shawnee State University to Host Glockner's Dare to Dream

 Dare2Dream  Shawnee State University is proud to be the 
   host of the Glockner's "Dare-to-Dream" high
   School competition on March 20, 2018.  
   Become an entrepreneurial hero, and
   compete for over $30,000 in cash prizes.  The
   event is at 5:30 p.m. in the Vern Riffe Center
   for the Arts.

   A pre-event was held on November 7, 2017,  
   to provide more information. If you missed it,
   you may watch it here. A video promo for
   the event may be viewed here. Follow the
   Dare to Dream Facebook page for updates.

Shawnee State University and Yost Labs Invited to Present at University Startup Demo Day

StartupYost Labs of Portsmouth was among 40 University Startup companies selected to present to Fortune 1000 corporations, policy leaders, federal government agencies, angel investors, and entrepreneurs in Washington, DC in mid-April 2017 as part of University Startups Conference & Demo Day.

The event featured universities and partners with innovative applied research as well as internship opportunities.  As a university partner, it was an honor for SSU President Rick Kurtz to be invited to talk about our relationship with Yost Labs, describe our game development programs, and introduce Greg Merril, CEO of Yost Labs, who shared highlights of products they are developing with the help of faculty, students, and resources here at SSU.

Shawnee State University Hosts

PORTSFuture Entrepreneurship Roundtable

Photos courtesy of Tristan Smith

 Picture of Moderator: Greg Merrill, CEO, Yost Labs   

Moderator: Greg Merrill, CEO, Yost Labs
  Picture of Alex Russell of LiTS, and Dale King and Renee Wallace of Doc Spartan

Alex Russell of LiTS, and Dale King and Renee Wallace of Doc Spartan
Picture of Shawnee State Student Ambassadors

Shawnee State Student Ambassadors

Picture of Dr. Rick Kurtz, President, Shawnee State University

Dr. Rick Kurtz, President, Shawnee State University

Picture of John Glazer and Faith Knutsen  of TechGROWTH Ohio

John Glazer and Faith Knutsen  of TechGROWTH Ohio

Picture of Alexander Kohls, U.S. Small Business Administration 

Alexander Kohls, U.S. Small Business Administration

Picture of elly O'Bryant, The Ohio State University South Centers

Kelly O'Bryant, The Ohio State University South Centers
Picture of Jason Kester, Southern Ohio Port Authority

Jason Kester, Southern Ohio Port Authority

On Monday, March 13, 2017, Shawnee State hosted the PORTSFuture Entrepreneurship Roundtable.  Attendees heard success stories from local business owners and learned about resources available to start and grow their own businesses.

The PORTSFuture project provided funding for this event.  This project is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Environmental Management Portsmouth/Paducah Project Office.

Greg Merril, CEO of Yost Labs, served as a member and moderator of the panel which also included Dale King and Renee Wallace of Doc Spartan and Alex Russell of LiTS.  Dale and Renee appeared on Shark Tank on February 10, 2017, and received an offer from Robert Herjavec.  Alex, a senior Computer Engineering Technology major at Shawnee State, helped to start LiTS, an Information Technology service provider.

In addition to Shawnee State University, our sponsors included the Ohio University Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, TechGROWTH Ohio, The Ohio State University South Centers, the Joint Economic Development Initiative of Southern Ohio (JEDISO), the Jackson County Economic Development Partnership and the Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission.


Entrepreneurial Toolkit

Are you interested in starting your own business?  Numerous resources and templates are available at the links below that can be utilized to start or expand your small business.  These tools are provided through our partnership with the Ohio State University South Centers, Endeavor Center in Piketon, Ohio:

TGO Logo

Shawnee State University is a partner with TechGROWTH Ohio, a $52 million public-private partnership composed of the Ohio Third Frontier program, Ohio University and the private investment community.  It is one of the regional entrepreneurial signature programs funded by the Ohio Third Frontier program to provide business expertise, services and investments for startup companies in the 20-county Southeastern Ohio area.  As one of the premier programs of the Ohio University Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, TechGROWTH Ohio is part of an entrepreneurial ecosystem that includes programs supporting university and regional technology commercialization and small business incubation.



At inventhub.techgrowthohio.com, you can request assistance from TechGROWTH to connect you with the experts, money and other critical resources to turn your creative inventions into business opportunities.

LIGHTS (Leveraging Innovation Gateways and Hubs Toward Sustainability

LIGHTSShawnee State University is a Gateway for LIGHTS which provides expertise, training and resources to the regional workforce, entrepreneurs, companies and local communities.  LIGHTS is for individuals who live or work in the 28-county region and are interested in building a product and/or creating a business.  This program partners with various regional hubs and gateways that give its team the ability to make your ideas happen. Contact LIGHTS.



Alumni Career Services & Workforce Development

Contact Information

Angie Duduit
Coordinator, Alumni Career Services & Workforce Development
Shawnee State University
940 Second Street, Massie B50
Portsmouth, OH 45662

Main: (740) 351-3322
E-mail: aduduit@shawnee.edu

Facebook Twitter

Page maintained by Marketing and Communications.