Fall 2024: Tulane University Innovation Institute supports innovation in the classroom with the inaugural Faculty Innovation Grants

Innovation Grants

Adam Marcus, School of Architecture, demonstrates the 3-D Ceramics printer at the Tulane Creativity and Innovation Summit in Spring 2024


In the fall of 2024, Tulane University students can engage in innovative learning through courses designed to integrate creativity and practical problem-solving into their studies. These courses include opportunities to use robotic 3D clay printers for climate change adaptation in the new Tulane Digital Ceramics Lab and leverage the Tulane Film Festival as a case study for entrepreneurial ventures. 

The Tulane University Innovation Institute (TUII) leads this movement with the newly introduced Faculty Innovation Grants. These grants were designed to promote innovation and entrepreneurship within the curriculum at all ten Tulane schools. Each grant provides up to $2,500 for faculty members who applied in the spring of 2024. The Tulane Innovation Institute Faculty Innovation Council, composed of faculty experts and innovators, reviewed the grant applications and selected the grant awardees.  

The Faculty Innovation Council will also work with TUII to develop workshops and offer faculty development grants in FY25, in partnership with the Center for Engaged Learning & Technology (CELT), to support faculty interests in innovation and entrepreneurship best practices. This initiative is part of a broader effort to deepen an innovation mindset with traditional academic frameworks.

Faculty Innovation Grant classes will be offered across six Tulane schools. Notably, Rob Lalka, of the A.B Freeman School and author of the recently released book "The Venture Alchemists: How Big Tech Turned Profits into Power," will collaborate with Matthew Escarra of the School of Science and Engineering and a recent Tulane Innovation Institute Proof of Concept awardee for his groundbreaking solar technology, to teach a course on ethical technology practices. The "Tech Ethics" course will explore strategies for mitigating the risks associated with technological advancements.

“We are excited to partner with faculty in the classroom on these inaugural innovation grants,” said Kimberly Gramm, Tulane Innovation Institute David and Marion Mussafer Chief Innovation and Entrepreneurship Officer. “These grants empower our faculty to offer forward-looking learning experiences to equip our students to become the innovators of tomorrow.”

The Tulane Innovation Institute proudly announces the recipients of these inaugural grants and their respective courses:

    •    Alissa Bilfield, A.B. Freeman School of Business: Social Venturing for a Sustainable Future  
    •    Matthew Escarra and Rob Lalka, School of Science and Engineering and Freeman School of Business: Tech Ethics  
    •    Saad Hassan, School of Science and Engineering: Human-Computer Interaction  
    •    Amanda Hill and Evan Nicoll, School of Liberal Arts: The Mythology and Reality of Leadership  
    •    Adam Marcus, School of Architecture: Ecological Tectonics: Ceramic Assemblies for Climate Adaptation  
    •    Muira McCammon, School of Liberal Arts with Courtesy Appointment in Tulane Law: Emerging Technologies & Internet Law
    •    Jolene Pinder, School of Liberal Arts: Film Festivals  
    •    Richard Priore, School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine: Managerial Economics for Public Health Leaders  
    •    Andrew Ward, School of Liberal Arts: Introduction to International Development

The Faculty Innovation Grant initiative underscores the Tulane Innovation Institute's dedication to advancing an entrepreneurial spirit and innovative outlook across the university. To learn more about the Tulane Innovation Institute’s upcoming programs and opportunities, follow us on LinkedIn and Instagram.