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September 21, 2010

Report Affirms Success of UMBC ACTiVATE Entrepreneur Training Program

Recent Study Details Economic Impact on Region

Deborah Shapiro
Marketing Manager

A recent report by the Sage Policy Group and the Nearing Group affirms the positive economic impact of UMBC’s ACTiVATE® program. The report concludes that ACTiVATE® creates jobs at a "remarkably low cost" when compared to benchmarks for entrepreneurial job creation and generates substantial income for local governments and the State of Maryland.

Since its inception in 2005, ACTiVATE® has trained over 100 women with significant business or technical experience to start companies based on technologies developed at area universities and research institutions. Over 30 companies have been created as a result of the program. These companies have hired or plan to hire a total of 124 employees; the study estimates a total of 234 direct and spin-off jobs will be created as a result of the ACTiVATE® program by the end of 2011. The cost of producing each job is estimated to be about $6,000, far lower than the estimated $92,000 spent to create each job under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

The study estimates that ACTiVATE® generates an average of $460,000 annually in income tax revenue for state and local governments in Maryland. An even larger impact on the state’s economy is the creation of a culture of entrepreneurship among women, a group traditionally underrepresented in the field. By increasing the number of would-be entrepreneurs and giving them the training and guidance they need, ACTiVATE® has helped move many technologies created by Maryland scientists from the lab to the marketplace. This is a necessary component to developing a knowledge-based economy.

ACTiVATE®’s success has inspired spin-offs and expansion. In April of this year, UMBC licensed the program to the Path Forward Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship for national and international expansion. The first ACTiVATE® spin-off program was recently launched at Texas State University in San Marcos.

“We are thrilled to hear about the study’s finding,” said Ellen Hemmerly, executive director of bwtech@UMBC Research and Technology Park and a leader of the development of the ACTiVATE® program. “It affirms what we knew all along: that ACTiVATE® has tremendous economic impact, both on its participants and the region as a whole.”

Full study available here:

Posted by dshapiro at September 21, 2010 4:54 PM