The future of CU-ICAR as the West Point of the global transformation of mobility
Those of us who are friends of Bob Geolas are excited for him that he has found his dream job in RTP, but saddened that will be leaving CU-ICAR. The campus that has developed during his tenure as executive director of CU-ICAR is an awesome asset for Clemson, Greenville, South Carolina, and the United States.
Many people, perhaps most people, still under appreciate CU-ICAR's potential for transformational change. With four endowed chairs held by preeminent scholars, a strong faculty and staff, and 150 graduate students, the Carrol A. Cambell Graduate Engineering Center is the West Point of the global transformation of mobility training the young lieutenants who will provide the leadership we need to create the future.
Given that it started as a green field only a few years ago, much of the emphasis of CU-ICAR has appropriately been on physical infrastructure. That is crucial, because people have to work and products and services are developed and delivered somewhere.
Here is a short video from the recent InnoMobility conference we produced a couple of weeks ago. I am particularly impressed with the people who came from Michigan, New York and even Paris, who now see us as thought leaders in mobility.
There is incredible young talent who will be graduating over the next several years from CU-ICAR. We need to nurture the community where as many of them as possible can stay and build their careers here because this the best opportunity in the world available to them, whether that is working for a large company like Michelin or Sage, or perhaps even more importantly founding the company which will be the Apple or Google of mobility.
The best and brightest students need access to capital focused on mobility, such as BMW iVentures, who you see in the video. They need relationships with world class companies like Michelin, Sage, KEMET, Flextronics, Verizon, AT&T, Itron, Duke Energy, and Acumen IT, to find the parts and pieces they need to create the future. We need to put as much focus into developing the community in and around the buildings at CU-ICAR over the next several years as we did in developing the buildings themselves over the last several years.
We need the iPod of mobility created in South Carolina, and there is a young Sergey Brin or Steve Jobs at CU-ICAR who can do it.