Priorities:Towson University Student Priorities

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Towson University (TU) is on a mission to cultivate a vibrant culture of innovation and entrepreneurship among its student body, faculty and staff, and in the community. Nestled in the heart of Towson, Maryland, the university has recognized the need to bridge the gap between academia and industry to foster a more entrepreneurial mindset among its students. TU is committed to becoming a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship, positioning itself as a leader in cultivating an environment where students are inspired to think creatively, take risks, and turn their ideas into thriving businesses. The university is strategically positioned within the vibrant Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area, known for its burgeoning tech and business ecosystem.

Strategies for Expansion of Innovation and Entrepreneurship on Campus

Strategy One: Increasing Student Safety on Campus and in the Community

Tactic #1: Collaborate with Local Law Enforcement on Campus Safety Initiatives

Description: Forge partnerships with local law enforcement agencies to enhance campus safety and improve the relationship between students and the police. This collaboration can involve joint training exercises, workshops on safety awareness, and the establishment of a campus police advisory board comprising students and officers.


  1. Initiate discussions with local law enforcement agencies about collaboration
  2. Organize joint safety training sessions for students and police officers
  3. Form a Campus Police Advisory Board with student representatives
  4. Conduct regular forums for students and law enforcement to address safety concerns

Tactic #2: Establish a Community Policing Partnership

Description: Forge a partnership between the university's campus police department and local law enforcement agencies to enhance student safety in the community. This collaboration will involve joint patrols, sharing of safety data, and community engagement efforts to build trust and improve the overall safety environment.


  1. Initiate discussions with local law enforcement agencies about a partnership
  2. Develop a memorandum of understanding outlining the terms of the partnership
  3. Launch joint patrols and safety initiatives in high-risk areas near campus
  4. Conduct regular meetings to evaluate the effectiveness of the partnership and make improvements

Strategy Two: Create a Towson social justice innovation lab

Tactic #1: Secure mentorship programming for interested students

Description: Open an innovation lab funded by the university and ran by local leaders in entrepreneurship, social justice, and others such as professors in the TU community. This lab would help establish mentorship for students who design ideas specific to issues such as campus safety, mental health, and other justice issues. Within the lab, the students would be mentored 1-1 to bring ideas to fruition, then, would be helped with securing funding and implementation.


  1. Speak with the TU Armory about establishing local mentors for students
  2. Find interested students and secure mentorship for at least five
  3. Host monthly speaker series with the mentors for the student cohort and local community
  4. Showcase initial student ideas at a campus-wide entrepreneurship event

Tactic #2: Successfully obtain a grant from the Ford Foundation to allow students to begin projects at a large scale

Description: The Ford Foundation will award TU a grant to open the social justice lab. The money will be distributed to various student projects.


  1. Apply to a Dignity and Justice fund grant from the Ford Foundation in collaboration with the Towson University Foundation
  2. Obtain funds from the Ford Foundation
  3. Fully fund the Social Justice lab, reserving funds to directly support student teams
  4. Host a student pitch competition to see what mentor-mentee teams will receive the grant

Tactic #3: Implement projects in the local community

Description: Students will work with the City of Baltimore and Baltimore County leaders to implement their justice-based projects.


  1. Schedule a meeting between student teams and City/County leaders
  2. Have student teams pitch their ideas
  3. With the help of TU-based leaders, implement projects on a city and country wide level
  4. Hold a feedback forum to understand how the lab could develop and progress over time

Strategy Three: Introduce students to the idea of design thinking

Tactic #1: Start hosting a class lead by a mentor from the Armory about design thinking

Description: Offer a seminar/core class to teach design thinking and introduce them to problems that would need solving on campus


1. Speak with the TU Armory about getting mentors to teach students design thinking in a classroom setting

2. Recruit students who are interested in I&E to take the class for a "test drive" of sorts

3. Improve the program based on feedback and launch an introductory cohort/ class with 15-20 students

Tactic #2: Allow other courses (specifically core classes) to host smaller segments and integration about design thinking and innovation

Description: In order to reach as many people as possible, it would be a very good idea to integrate at least part of an I&E course segment into core classes to get more students introduced to the program.


1. Talking to the deans of various departments in order to integrate I&E into their curriculum

2. Find mentors (mostly from the Armory and local community) to assist with teaching

3. Incorporate the sessions into regular class discussion

Tactic #3: Host a public service event/speed design workshop that can help students get a feel for I&E thinking

Description: A volunteer effort designed to not only give back to the community but also teach prospective students the fundamentals of I&E design outside of the classroom


1. Talk with Baltimore county officials and get together a team involving the student organizers

2. Have students pitch, present, and put together an idea within a short amount of time (EX: week-long pitch contest)

3. Have everyone give feedback on the program and find ways to improve it

Strategy Four: Enhancing Mental Health Support for Students

Tactic #1: Creating an Accessible, Mental Health Hub in Each Academic Building

Description: Establish accessible mental health hubs in every academic building on campus to provide students with easy access to mental health resources and support. These hubs will offer a range of services, including counseling sessions, mindfulness workshops, and educational materials on mental health topics.


  1. Survey Academic Building Locations:
    • Identify suitable locations within each academic building for the mental health hub.
    • Assess the feasibility and accessibility of each chosen location.
  2. Design and Renovation:
    • Develop a design plan for the mental health hubs, ensuring they are welcoming and comfortable spaces.
    • Allocate budget and resources for the renovation or construction of these hubs.
  3. Staffing and Training:
    • Hire qualified mental health professionals and support staff to run the hubs.
    • Provide training on various mental health topics, cultural sensitivity, and crisis intervention to the staff.
  4. Services and Programming:
    • Create a comprehensive list of services offered in the hubs, including individual counseling, group therapy, and self-help resources.
    • Develop a schedule of workshops and programs aimed at promoting mental health awareness and resilience.
  5. Promotion and Awareness:
    • Launch a campus-wide campaign to inform students about the new mental health hubs and their services.
    • Develop marketing materials, including brochures and digital signage, to promote awareness.
  6. Evaluation and Feedback:
    • Implement a feedback system to collect input from students and staff regarding the effectiveness and accessibility of the mental health hubs.
    • Regularly assess the impact of these hubs on student well-being and mental health support.
  7. Continuous Improvement:
    • Use collected feedback and data to make improvements to the services and facilities offered in the hubs.
    • Seek opportunities to expand the reach and accessibility of mental health support on campus, considering the evolving needs of the student population.

Related Links

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Danielle McNerney - Towson University Fellow Candidate, 2023 Cohort

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Anish Boddu - Towson University Fellow Candidate, 2023 Cohort

About Towson University - learn more about the universities I&E history and current achievements