Ever since the campus store transitioned into The Nest on Wayne Street, its old location has been vacant. That vacancy is now being filled by the entrepreneurial hub for innovative ventures and endeavors (eHIVE).
The eHIVE, which is currently located on the second floor of the Stover Campus Center, has already begun plans to relocate to the campus store’s old location on the first floor of Stover.
“We’re in the process of raising money for it now,” said Dr. Melinda Walls, director of the entrepreneurship and innovative program. “Our hope was that we would be able to open the space by this time next year, but the timeline – because of supply chain issues – is really kind of up in the air.”
The newly relocated and renovated eHIVE will include a classroom, shop, maker space, storage room and “flex space” for small groups to gather. Walls said the space will also include a number of 3D printers and sewing machines, among other equipment.
“We wanted the space to be as versatile as possible because we do lots of different things,” Walls said.
In addition to the new rooms and equipment, Lily Portman, eHIVE graduate assistant, said the relocation will create a cohesive space for the entrepreneurial program.
“Right now the entrepreneurial department isn’t really in a unified space,” Portman said. “We’re spread out across campus and this kind of brings us together and unifies the group.”
However, Walls emphasized that the renovated space is not just for the entrepreneurial program. It is for the entire campus.
“We want to inspire the whole campus to be creative so we don’t care what your major is, if you want to become a maker … anybody is welcome to do that. We just have to make sure you’re properly trained and we follow the right safety codes,” Walls said.
With a newly renovated space, Walls mentioned how the increased accessibility will offer more opportunities for students to test their creativity.
“Students regardless of major need to be able to think creatively, do innovative problem solving, be able to take an idea from concept to actually through to production or to fruition and those are all the types of skill sets that entrepreneur leadership teaches. That is our goal for the program,” Walls said.
Portman shares in the excitement of the possibilities this new space offers.
“So many more students, if they have ideas, can make them happen now,” she said.