Affiliated Centers

Research and Academic Centers of Excellence

RIT has an abundance of research labs, innovation centers, and maker-spaces. Our centers of excellence can help you grow an idea, prototype a product, or build a commercialization system.

Exterior shot of Albert J. Simone Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Albert J. Simone Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Established in 2007, the Albert J. Simone Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship has become a hub for hands-on, experiential learning at RIT. Through various entrepreneurial business offerings and events, students gain a first-hand understanding of the importance of innovation. Student entrepreneurs will be able to find help and guidance as they seek to realize their own ideas and projects.

The center is a university-wide initiative designed to promote, nurture, and expand activities, which support innovation and entrepreneurship throughout RIT. In turn, the center is bolstered by RIT's strengths in multi-disciplinary and experiential learning.

Students collaborating in a shared work space

Leadership Academy @ Saunders

The Leadership Academy @ Saunders, directed by Dr. Molly McGowan, fosters innovative leadership for bridging business and technology. The academy is available to high school, undergraduate and graduate students, as well as alumni and employers. Explore Leadership Academy @ Saunders Experiences to find leadership opportunities tailored for you.

Competitive Sustainability Center

Competitive Sustainability Center

The Competitive Sustainability Center in Saunders College of Business at RIT leverages the strengths of both the college, and RIT, to help new and existing businesses, non-profits, and government agencies find and pursue competitive sustainability opportunities. Currently, the center supports $2.5 million in external-grant-funded projects, and has active projects over 15 countries on four continents.  We also encourage our affiliates to publish their findings, and we work with RIT students, alumni, staff and faculty on competitive sustainability projects as appropriate.

Gathered crowd in the Saunders atrium

Institute for Business, Government, and Society at RIT

The Institute for Business, Government, and Society at RIT, directed by Dr. Sandy Rothenberg, serves as a hub for research and teaching that focuses on the intersection of three of the main institutions shaping the world today: business, government, and society.

Student working with electronics in a lab

The Construct – All Access Makerspace

The Construct at RIT is an all-access makerspace designed to serve the needs of innovative students, employees, or faculty seeking to create new products, inventions, and applications. “The Construct” (located on the 4th floor of Institute Hall) enables students to foster ideas and aspirations. Especially students aiming to design, build, and realize new technologies or products that will impact the world. The Construct is equipped with machines and tools for milling, cutting, circuit board fabrication, 3D printing, rapid prototyping, etc.

The Construct is an area for functional prototyping, as well as cross-disciplinary collaboration. The creation of such workspaces has allowed students from any discipline to come together and create products based upon any innovative concepts they might have - especially those that would benefit from interdisciplinary teamwork.

Clearing House for Access to RIT Lab and Facility Resources. RIT operates a variety of design-related labs throughout the university. There is currently no clearing house mechanism to inform students when, or if, specialized labs are available for general use outside of an affiliated course. This lab will network existing labs and tool facilities, to inform students of open access times.

The RIT makerspace is designed to serve the needs of innovative students seeking to create new products, inventions and applications.

Presentation being given in a conference room

Venture Creations

Venture Creations incubator at RIT is a place where early to mid-seed stage companies can advance their concepts on the way to joining the ranks of profitable, viable businesses in New York State. Saunders students and faculty engage with VCI companies through Saunders Consulting Group, Capstone Projects, and provide additional real-world business exposure to the classroom. At Venture Creations business ideas that begin in the classroom get resources and a place to grow for reaching the next level in their development. Many resident companies graduate from Venture Creations after receiving venture capital.

Located just off campus at 125 Tech Park Drive, the incubator has been working with startups for 10 years. On-site staff assist VCI startups directly or put you in touch with RIT faculty, our service provider and investor networks, as well as students who can assist you with the development of your business. In 2009, Venture Creations was awarded designation as a Clean Energy Incubator by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, one of five in the state, expanding our services to companies engaged in a wide range of clean energy businesses.

exterior shot of Center for Urban Entrepreneurship

Center for Urban Entrepreneurship

The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship (CUE), located in the heart of the downtown business district at 40 Franklin Street (the historic Rochester Savings Bank), will help reshape the regional economy and build wealth within the urban community by being the hub for urban entrepreneurial programs and research. CUE provides a viable and successful vehicle to develop a new culture of entrepreneurship in the region, with a particular emphasis on the most underserved populations in the nine-county region.