Innovation implications of Sarasota's new UF engineering extension

Innovation implications of Sarasota's new UF engineering extension

Friday, April 15, 2016

A first-of-its kind engineering extension office of the University of Florida’s Wertheim College of Engineering aims to support economic and workforce development in the Sarasota-Manatee region, including training for high-tech, high-wage jobs.

Partners close to the project, called UF Innovation Station Sarasota County, say it could provide the necessary engineering and software talent as well as other capabilities to support growth of existing businesses and attract new companies that can diversify the regional economy, according to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.

With seed funding from UF, Sarasota County, the Charles and Margery Barancik Foundation, and Gulf Coast Community Foundation, the public-private partnership's goals include "supporting high-tech, high-wage jobs, creating a pipeline of engineering talent and technology to the region, fostering new start-ups and providing access to UF's research and development tools," the Herald-Tribune reports. The Innovation Station could have long-term implications for Sarasota-Manatee's economy and workforce related indicators, including high-tech jobs, new patents, and the share of workers holding STEM degrees, as well as education indicators like the number of tech degrees being earned in the region.