Mobely-Thompson Creative and Innovation Summer Academy
John W. Thompson, CEO of Virtual Instruments and Chairman of Microsoft Corporation,
and his wife, Sandi, have donated $1 Million a year for 5 years to his alma mater,
Florida A&M University. Seventy percent of the funds are earmarked for academic scholarships,
and 30% are set aside for FAMU's School of Business and Industry to establish the
Interdisciplinary Center for Creativity and Innovation (ICCI) to expose underrepresented
students to creativity, innovation, and intra/entrepreneurship with a focus in the
area of technology. The Center, directed by Dr. Jason Black, Associate Professor in
SBI, and under the leadership of the Dean, Dr. Shawnta Friday-Stroud, seeks to bring
together researchers, students and alumni across all disciplines in the effort to
establish and build a climate of technological commercialization and business creation
and ownership. Launching officially in Fall of 2015, ICCI will contain five major
1) A Business Incubator, housed off-campus and co-managed by the FAMU Small Business
Development Center, which will provide access to classes, seminars, and workshops
on business development and entrepreneurship. The Incubator is also a partner with
the Tallahassee Domi Ventures, a small business development hub coordinated by local
Tallahassee businesses, educators and government officials.
2) An Intra/Entrepreneurial Curriculum, providing courses for both undergraduate and
graduate students who wish to be trained to take initiative and calculated risks,
"think outside of the box, as well as exhibit effective leadership and strategic decision-making
skills within existing businesses or new business ventures.
3) An annual Business Plan Competition Day, where students and faculty can compete
for free access to the Incubator for one year, to build their ideas submitted in the
4) An annual Lemonade Day Event, coordinated by faculty members of ICCI, which invites
kids throughout the Big Bend area to participate in the National Lemonade Day event
each year, teaching the kids how to plan, start and operate a lemonade stand business.
5) An annual Summer Camp, the Mobley-Thompson Creativity and Innovation Academy, which
works to expose students grade 3 through 12 to intra/entrepreneurship, technology,
and other academic concepts through interactive, fun and hands-on learning activities.
"We are thankful to John and Sandi for their generous gift, which we will use to create
this excellent example of innovative intra/entrepreneurship programming," said Dr.