ADVERTISEMENT co-founder joins WPI entrepreneurial push

BY Zachary Comeau

Courtesy | WPI
Courtesy | WPI
Donna Levin

Donna Levin, the co-founder of online babysitting and nannying service, has been named to the newly created position of executive director of innovation and entrepreneurship at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.
Levin comes to WPI from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she is an entrepreneur-in-residence at the Martin Trust Center. She will oversee the WPI entrepreneurship and innovation track at the Sloan School of Management.
She begins at WPI on July 1, just as the school prepare to launch the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Center in the new Foise Innovation Studio and Messenger Residence Hall.
The 78,000-square-foot classroom and dormitory will open in early August, bringing active learning laboratories, technological suites and a makerspace designed to foster collaboration and support product iteration and prototyping.
“This is the perfect time for Donna Levin to join WPI, and our community is ready for her particular brand of leadership,” WPI President Laurie Leshin said in a press release. “WPI’s intense, hands-on curriculum is focused on addressing problems that don’t always have straightforward solutions and, as a result, students -- and faculty and staff -- learn to be intellectually nimble and fearless, and to innovate their way around challenges to develop applicable and sustainable solutions to those problems.”
With Levin leading, the new center will provide a more formalized structure to the school’s entrepreneurial efforts internally and externally, with an effort to more aggressively connect entrepreneurs to commercial and venture capital opportunities. 
“The word I have heard most at WPI is ‘impact,’” Levin said in a statement. “I am excited to be part of a culture where people are keenly interested in using technological developments for the greatest impact, not simply for commercialization and profit." 
According to WPI, the school has seen steady growth in the number of products and services developed on campus. Last year, the school recorded its most successful year for student patents and licenses: 42 students filed for patents and five patents were licensed.