Take a visit to Room 127 in Hayes Hall on the IU East campus in Richmond and one will encounter an absolute treasure trove of high-tech gadgetry. Think of it as an innovation station — a place for students to gain inspiration into research or a new business idea.
Want to try on a pair of Oculus Rift virtual reality goggles? Please do. Or perhaps a pair of Microsoft HoloLens? Absolutely. Want to take a load off? Then feel free to test your posture and stress levels with a Darma smart cushion. Or show your creative side with the help of a 3-D printer.
If you really want to go hands free, try on a motion-control Myo armband, which allows the touch-free use of such items as a phone or computer. For students who like to get analytical, they can take part in a stock market simulation that tracks students’ stock picks over 10 weeks.
Yet this is not just a room — it is also the office of senior lecturer Tim Scales, who is also director of the Center for Entrepreneurship at IU East’s School of Business and Economics. For years, Scales has championed having the latest technology openly available for students to use — not just business majors, but those from all departments and disciplines.
“The students create it, get it where they want it. They own it. They can patent it,” Scales said. “We can have students graduating who are making more money than most of us in our careers,” Scales said.
“It’s very unique to have people walk into a room and be able to use these,” said IU East School of Business and Economics Dean Robert Mulligan. “Most schools lock them up because they don’t want anyone to break them.”
Read more about Scales’ office/lab and IU East’s unique approach in making cutting-edge technology available for its students here.