September 25, 2012: Our speaker was Elizabeth Colbert-Busch, Director of Business Development, for the Clemson University Restoration Institute. She is in charge of the construction of a 140 million dollar facility which will evolve from a former structure at the old Navy Base. The institute will encourage entrepreneurs to move from design to reality in two top areas of international concern: ENERGY and WATER. These are the two chief elements of concern in a world faced with population, business and economic growth.
Clemson University was the first Land Grant University in SC. Such universities are the product of the Federal Morrill Act of 1862 and 1890 which granted federally controlled land to the states to develop colleges which focused on agriculture, science and engineering. Clemson established its first extension office in 1901 in Summerville.
Since its establishment in 2009 the institute has focused on addressing the needs of industry in the areas of WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT, APPLIED RESEARCH, and THE EDUCATION OF WORKING PROFESSIONALS. Clemson University is ranked 23rd in public universities and has 19,000 students and a faculty and staff of 5000. It offers 70 undergraduate degrees and 100 graduate degrees.
The new center is located on 27 acres that have land, railroad, and sea access including a deep port docking area. The advisory board consists of representatives from 14 major corporations. The building when completed will contain over 80,000 square feet of area for applied research, testing, and development. A recent addition is the Zucker Family Graduate Education Center which includes the Low Country Engineering Center, an Innovative Center, will offer advanced engineering degrees and conduct applied research.
With over $140,000,000 invested in the Lowcountry since 2010, Clemson University is a net contributor to the economy of the state of South Carolina.
Reported by Fred Sales, Keyway Committee