MT. PLEASANT — With the awarding of $55,000 in grants from the Michigan Initiative for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, Central Michigan University is making strides in advancing the state’s new economy.
The grant funds, administered by the Presidents Council, State Universities of Michigan, are targeted at creating 200 new startup businesses and fostering an atmosphere of entrepreneurship on campuses around the state.
Said Jim Hagerman, interim vice president of the CMU Office of Research and Sponsored Programs: “The future for our university is continuing in this direction, working with faculty in developing intellectual property.”
The grants fund three entrepreneurial projects on CMU’s campus:
* $25,000 to pilot a collaborative multi-institutional business plan competition between CMU and Michigan Technological University. The New Venture Competition expands this year to provide an opportunity for students with business startup ideas from CMU and MTU to compete for a top prize of $30,000.
* $22,000 for commercialization of new mercury absorbent technology for coal-fired power plants, which absorbs up to three times more mercury than current methods and converts into an insoluble product that can be safely discarded in landfills.
* $8,000 for market assessment for commercialization of a tap water filter for perchlorate. Chemistry professor Anja Mueller has designed a filtering system that is 10 times more effective in maintaining recommended levels of perchlorate in drinking water. Research indicates 10 percent of drinking water in the U.S. is above EPA legal perchlorate limits.
The university also is working to fuel the economy through partnerships with the CMU Research Corp. in the Mount Pleasant SmartZone, one of 15 designated SmartZones in Michigan, and the Isabella Bank Institute for Entrepreneurship.