Innovation Week Kicks Off April 28 at the University of San Diego

Thursday, April 13, 2017TOPICS: Innovation and EntrepreneurshipGuest SpeakersConferences and Workshops

Audacious people take risks and dream the impossible. That's why the University of San Diego brings together a whole world of social entrepreneurs, upstart innovators and thought leaders for Innovation Week—a celebration starting on the USD campus April 28 to help students and community members go from ‘wild dream’ to ‘wildly successful.’

Innovation Weeks kicks off on April 28th with a keynote address from Tom Love, founder and executive chairman of Love's Travel Stops and Country Stores, who will speak at noon in Manchester Auditorium about his entrepreneurial path to success. Love’s talk is free and open to the public. Paid parking is available in the West parking garage.

Love and his wife, Judy, started their stores in 1964 with one small location in a tiny western Oklahoma town. Today, Love’s has more than 420 locations across the country in 41 states and employs more than 17,000 talented team members. Love’s is recognized each year by Forbes as one of America’s largest privately owned companies.

On May 3, Innovation Week continues with final pitches for the 7th annual Social Innovation Challenge in the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice (KIPJ) building, starting at 10 a.m. Judges from prominent local and national companies and nonprofit institutions will evaluate the finalists’ six-minute social innovation pitches to determine how to allocate seed funding for social impact. The winners will be announced and prizes awarded on May 5 at the Social Innovation Challenge Award Ceremony starting at 4:30 p.m. in the KIPJ Theater. During the award ceremony, all finalists, who hail from colleges and universities all over San Diego County and Mexico, will give a 90-second fast pitch. The audience will be able to vote for an audience’s choice award. The event and reception are free and open to the public. Paid parking is available in the West parking garage.

More than 70 proposals were submitted for the USD School of Business’s 6th annual Venture Vetting (V2) Competition. On May 4, entrepreneurial students from San Diego as well as from Mexico and Uruguay will pitch their ideas in front of a panel of distinguished angel investors to win more than $30,000 in funding. V2 starts at 5 p.m. in KIPJ. It is free and open to the public. Paid parking is available in the West parking garage.

These Innovation Week events are made possible by generous support from Qualcomm Ventures, Qualcomm Wireless Reach, Moxie Foundation, Pacific Western Bank, the McNamara Purcell Foundation, Jerome’s Furniture, the Price Family Foundation and private donations.

For more information about Innovation Week at USD, visit and or contact Rachel Christensen, assistant director of the Center for Peace and Commerce, at


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