Innovation Center

Mission: The Innovation Center seeks to bring together students, faculty, alumni, and the community to design critical, creative and systems solutions for our curriculum and the complex challenges of today's world. 

Vision: An innovation center at a Jesuit University must be different. The Innovation Center at Regis University can be summed up in one word: PLUS. Imagine if you were getting a degree and you got a world-class business education PLUS a curriculum that builds grit, will, resilience, empathy, humility, perseverance, and a desire for social change? Imagine if you got a world-class business education PLUS you worked in a design-studio setting learning the arts of observation, collaborative brainstorming, visualization and creation. Imagine a world-class business education PLUS learning in a way that increases your odds of success through an alumni network focused on just that – actively helping students build and see a connected matrix across all sectors of the business community. Finally, imagine a world-class business education focused in innovation and entrepreneurship but pushing students to focus on these PLUS seek structural and systems solutions to some of the greatest world problems. The Innovation Center in the College of Business & Economics is about ideas PLUS putting those ideas into actions by creating partnerships, platforms, products and affecting policies.

Message from the Director:

Hello! Bienvenidos!

Thank you for coming to The Innovation Center site of the College of Business and Economics (CBE) at Regis University. The vision for the CBE and the three new Centers of Distinction (Innovation, Sustainable Economic and Enterprise Development; and Workforce Ethics and Lifelong Learning) is to help business become stewards of society with the goal of improving the quality of life on earth. The Innovation Center is specifically designed and intended to assist the college in the “how” our graduates are working to accomplish this vision. Let me explain.

In their 2012 article, A Leadership Education Model for Jesuit Business Schools, McCallum, Connor, and Horian define the distinction of graduates from business schools at Jesuit universities where self-awareness, ingenuity, love, and heroism are the essential dispositions, skills, and traits of the graduates. And while the public, those hiring our graduates, and even our students all agree that these are fundamental skills that graduates should have, the latest information tells us that we are not delivering this type of education as well as we can with all of our business students. Building leaders with values, experience, and the desire to improve society is at the core of The Innovation Center.

As The Innovation Center grows, our work will focus in four areas:

First, we are so excited about the technology and special furniture in the Gronowski Innovation Incubator Lab space. Contact us for tours, reservations and orientations. This design studio/idea corral is not your typical innovation space because we are not building or producing things yet. We don’t want a shark-tank style space. The likelihood of success in that model is too small. We want better odds of success. We want a shape tank – a space where you can practice, learn, and apply the meta-principles of design (humility, human observation skills, collective and additive thinking, creativity) to any idea.

Teaching and working in and around design, The Innovation Center will encourage, support, and partner with faculty, students, businesses, and the community to drive a business school plus curriculum. The plus is for a curriculum intentionally designed to build grit, will, perseverance, and a desire for social change. The plus is teaching that enables empathy, cultural competence, and critical and systems thinking as the learning outcomes alongside the business content of today.

An Alumni Matrix. We don't want a mere network. You can’t see networks. In the Jesuit tradition of companionship, we want to create and nurture a matrix where our alumni are obvious companions to our students serving to connect with, actively introduce to all business sector connections, and partner with students in thinking and acting.

Seeking Structural Solutions to Structural Problems. How can our students experience problem solving in ways that honor people, create partnerships, design platforms, products, and influence policy such that lasting solutions are discovered? The Innovation Center will start and serve as host for a third wave discussion series linking the community, local businesses, policy makers, and our students and faculty together to brainstorm solutions for the pressing problems of our time.

Innovation at Regis University means:

  • 3 kinds of thinking that the business community needs
  • 4 kinds of leadership that the world needs
  • 1 model of companionship

What is the Innovation Challenge All About? – Want to Win $10,000?

Do you have an idea that might be a business? Do you want the University to support you being an entrepreneur? Do you think you're not an entrepreneur because you don't study business and don't know where to begin (think again!)? Do you want mentoring to help your idea become successful? Do you need startup funding to begin? If you answered YES, then you should participate! The Challenge is open to all students, staff, faculty and alums of Regis University.

If you have an idea for an innovation business that is desirable, feasible and viable, you can compete for $10K, $5K, and $1K in prizes. You can attend several informational sessions. The top ten finalists will have exclusive access to seasoned CEOs, owners and alumni. The top three will be given co-working space in the Innovation Center in the College of Business and Economics, from May-August of 2018.

Read how the Regis community was "Inspired to Innovate".

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long will the Innovation Challenge last?
A: The inaugural Launch Party and Info Session was held on October 23, 2017, with over 50 students in attendance. It began in Fall 2017 and will culminate in Spring 2018. For calendar of events, see website below.

Q: Why is the Innovation Center doing this?
A: We want the Regis community to succeed--students, faculty and staff.

Q: How many are signing up to compete in the Innovation Challenge?
A: Fourteen teams started out. Each team must include at least one student.

Q: When do I have to enter my idea into the Challenge?
A: You can declare your interest as a business idea at any time up until December 10, 2017. Finalists to compete in the spring will be determined at the semifinals December 11-13 (nine teams were selected). These should consist of four minute pitches, slide deck presentation encouraged. See for judging criteria outline. You should declare you want to be a part of the challenge before those dates so you get scheduled to pitch.

Q: What happens at the Open house/Check Ins on November 6 and November 20, 2017?
A: You can get answers to any questions you have about the Innovation Challenge, discuss your idea, and get some feedback. Fill out the Regis StartupTree and join a team or find one. Join now at

Q: What if I can't attend the Open House/Check Ins?
A: Contact Ethan Lockshin below.

Q: I need a headshot to make my LinkedIn or other social media profiles look more professional. Where can I have one taken?
A: We will have a professional photographer (marketing student, Aaron Han) taking headshots at the November 6 and November 20 open houses, from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Other times and purposes by appointment.

Q: Where can I find the Challenge calendar and other information?
A: Visit the website at

Q: When does the Challenge end?
A: The 2017-18 Innovation Challenge culminates in the finals competition following the 2nd Annual Alumni Matrix Meetup on April 20, 2018. For more info and to RSVP click here.

Q: How often is the Innovation Challenge held?
A: A new Innovation Challenge competition will kick off every Fall semester. We are accepting applications for the next Student Director position.


Ethan Lockshin, Student Director, the Regis Innovation Challenge
Office Hours: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
College of Business and Economics
Clarke Hall Room 358

Ken Sagendorf, Director of the Innovation Center

Q: Where can I find the Challenge calendar and other information?
A: Visit the website at
An all-glass, flexible thinking studio/classroom where our students work on the next big ideas, our faculty design the curriculum that prepares and encourages our students to change the world, and local businesses come to collaborate, conceptualize, create, and launch business solutions. This space brings design thinking to business education focusing on developing the meta-skills of design—humility, human observation skills, and the ability to additively, collectively, and exploratively brainstorm ideas, and rapidly prototype solutions so that we may set about breaking them and learning from failure. In the Innovation Incubator, all can write on the walls from floor to ceiling, all furniture is on wheels, and there is a built-in co-work space for growing businesses to work alongside our students.

Read more about Regis' journey Into the Future.