On behalf of the Division of Strategic Partnerships & Applied Research and the College of Business & Economics, I am pleased to announce Dr. Nicholas (Nick) Hammond has joined Towson University as its first Executive Director of Entrepreneurship. Nick will serve as a catalyst in the academic and non-academic environments to strategically align entrepreneurial activities across campus, create opportunities for the TU brand, and increase innovative business concepts.
“I am excited to join Towson University and take on this new role integrating academia and industry at the interface of innovation and entrepreneurship.” said Hammond. “I am thrilled to support the growth of the next generation of innovators for the Maryland region.”
Nick is charged with integrating and unifying TU’s current assets—Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, Venture Creation, TU Incubator, Student Launch Pad, academic entrepreneurship programs, among others—to create an engaged entrepreneurial ecosystem. This ultimately will create new pathways to partner with TU, a key objective of BTU—Partnerships at Work for Greater Baltimore. Nick will also provide comprehensive support of faculty technology transfer and commercialization.
Frank Bonsal III, Director of Venture Creation, oversees TU Incubator, which currently supports 45 member companies. “The Venture Creation team and TU Incubator stakeholders are thrilled to have the evolution of TU entrepreneurship catalyzed by the onboarding of Nick,” said Bonsal.
Since 2007, TU Incubator has supported over 100 member companies and has had a $150M economic impact on our region. “Having Nick in this position will increase the visibility of our past wins and current work and induce new ways to make our campus an entrepreneurial hub of Greater Baltimore.”
Jan Baum is founder and director of the Center for Innovation + Entrepreneurship and director of the Minor in Entrepreneurship through the College of Business & Economics. She and her team fosters talent, ideas, and opportunities across the university community through a comprehensive slate of programs, competitions, and the infusion of innovative thinking.
“Having Nick on board will create a more holistic approach to entrepreneurship and allow the university community to harness the knowledge, skills, and resources needed to significantly impact the region in terms of both economic development and social progress,” said Baum.
Nick brings over a decade of experience in entrepreneurship from founding several companies to establishing an incubator—Harbor Launch at the Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology (IMET) in Baltimore. Additionally, he has worked with a wide array of faculty, supporting them with commercialization and technology transfer as well as mentorship and helping to raise funds while launching their own companies.
Dr. Hammond earned his Ph.D. in medicinal chemistry from the University of Mississippi and his B.S in biology and chemistry from Butler University.
We are indeed fortunate to have Nick join the Towson University community and I hope everyone will extend him a warm welcome.
More about Nick
Prior to joining Towson University, Nick served as Associate Vice President of Innovation and Economic Development (AVPIED) for the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES) and the Assistant Director of the Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology (IMET). As AVPIED, Nick worked to connect UMCES with Maryland’s innovation ecosystem. He also executed the Institute’s mission of economic development and technology commercialization. After arriving at IMET in 2013, Nick founded and managed a number of programs to support this mission including the Harbor Launch small business incubator, Baltimore Entrepreneur Office Hours, the Ratcliffe Environmental Entrepreneurs Fellowship (REEF) Program, the IMET Industrial Liaison Program, the IMET Entrepreneur in Residence Program, and the Feeding Individuals to Support Health (FISH) Program.
Previously, Nick co-founded Ablitech, Inc. in 2006 as its first CEO, and served as its Chief Technology Officer until becoming the Chief Science Officer in 2011. Nick catalyzed Ablitech’s move to the University of Maryland BioPark in Baltimore, MD in January of 2012 and was instrumental in raising more than $2.8M from federal grants and contracts, foundations, angel investment, and state agencies for the development of Ablitech’s Versadel drug delivery technology.
Nick’s past research has involved drug design and development, drug delivery, polymers, gene silencing, basic cell research, and small animal models. He has authored a number of scientific papers, presentations, and patents and has been honored as a National Science Foundation (NSF) IGERT Fellow and an American Foundation for Pharmaceutical Education (AFPE) Endowed Fellow.