President Crain welcomes new Innovation Hub to campus


Austin O'Brien

President John. L Crain provides remarks at the grand opening of the Innovation Hub.

Sims Memorial Library now has a new section on the second floor, devoted to group projects and new ideas for campus. 

The Innovation Hub, or iHub, is a collaboration between SLU and Louisiana Economic Development to provide a better environment for students to develop new ideas. 

University President Dr. John L. Crain gave a speech to commemorate the opening of the iHub on Nov. 18, expressing his excitement about providing students a chance to have a room like this in the library so they may reach their full potential. 

“It’s not about the building. It’s about our students getting the opportunity for collaboration and innovation in a nice environment,” Crain said. 

Crain was followed by other speakers at the event, including Dr. Lou Guthrie from LED FastStart, and the Director of the iHub Bonnie Achee. Both of these women played key roles in the development of the iHub, allowing for its opening to take place.

The iHub itself is said to have multiple different uses regarding technology and collaboration, and provides a large assortment of different rooms to decide what it is you want to do.

Some projects they plan to have in the iHub include Podcasting workshops, a Virtual Reality Development Lab, and multiple multipurpose rooms for study groups or brainstorming sessions. The technology can be removed or swapped based on what the needs of the students are. 

“We want to help you create the next best thing here at the iHub. The sky’s the limit here,” Achee said. As the director of the iHub, she especially is looking forward to working in this new addition.

Crain also stayed after his speech to communicate with audience members about his expectations for the new area in the library. 

“We definitely are excited to see where this goes. As Bonnie said in her speech, the sky’s the limit. We’re not limited to any other program. It’s up to our students and faculty as to how creative they can be with the iHub,” said Crain.

Not only are there going to be students working in the iHub, but both Guthrie and Achee also said that they are expecting businesses to come to campus to work with students. 

“It’s a huge plus for our workforce for students to get hands-on experience like this,” Guthrie said.

For more information on the iHub and what to expect from the new addition, visit the new section on the second floor of the library.