University Libraries 3D-VR Task Force Seeks Your Input

College of Engineering faculty,

Do you have an interest in Virtual Reality (VR) or Augmented Reality (AR) or use it in your research? Do you foresee assigning classwork that would require VR? Could the Penn State University Libraries help with your VR/AR needs?

The 3-D and Virtual Reality Services Task Force of the University Libraries would love to hear from you. We are currently in the brainstorming and needs-assessment phase of a plan to support VR/AR through the University Libraries at University Park, and are looking for user input to inform our efforts.

Many other university libraries have begun taking steps toward VR/AR, and your feedback will ensure that Penn State Libraries’ capabilities are well-suited for the needs of you and your students.

Please send feedback and potential uses of this technology to Engineering Library Head, Beth Thomsett-Scott ( Contact Liaison Librarians Angela Davis (ard21) or Vanessa Eyer (vld5011), Staff Assistant/task force member Harlan Ritchey (jhr109), or Beth with comments or questions.

Many thanks in advance for your input,

Head, Engineering Library
325 Hammond

Innov8: V-Commerce Virtual Reality Competition

Walmart’s Store No 8, Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global, and Accenture have announced Innov8: V-Commerce, an open invitation to the virtual reality community to submit ideas that have the potential to shape the way we shop and live.

The program invites companies and individuals from around the world that are developing disruptive technologies and experiences that could help shape the future of commerce in virtual reality. A variety of applicants in the virtual reality ecosystem are welcome to apply to the open invitation. Technology and content companies can apply with current offerings or pitch a new product or concept.

Finalists will present winning concepts at an invite-only gala in Los Angeles in October.

What do the selected winners receive?

–          Capital to fund development costs and strategic advice during incubation of concept
–          Exclusive chance to showcase at invite-only event
–          VIP dinner with Innov8 Judge Board prior to showcase event
–          Leadership training and mentorship with the Thrive Global e-course
–          Valuable marketing and PR exposure, as well as access to top VCs and retail executives
–          Founding member of Store No 8 V-Commerce committee

High profile board of judges include:

–          Arianna Huffington, founder and ceo of Thrive Global
–          Marc Lore, president and ceo of Wal-Mart U.S. e-commerce and founder and CEO of
–          Kirsten Green, general partner of Forerunner Ventures
–          Tipatat Chennavasin, general partner of the Virtual Reality Fund
–          Seth Beal & Katie Finnegan, Store No 8 principals
–          Marc Carrel-Billiard, senior managing director of Accenture Labs

Interested individuals can apply here.


Lucas Passmore Gets a ‘We Are’

Each week, Penn State News recognizes Penn Staters who go above and beyond what’s asked of them in their work at the University.

This week, Lucas Passmore, assistant professor and undergraduate coordinator in engineering science and mechanics, was honored.

His nominator wrote: “Lucas has gone above and beyond his call as a professor. This includes his willingness to answer questions for students and staff and review schedules for students who want to study abroad — and always with a positive attitude.”

Read the full story on Penn State News.

Do you know someone who deserves a shout-out? If so, consider taking a minute to nominate that person by filling out a short online form.

Sony Research Award Program Accepting Applications

On behalf of Sony, I would like to extend a personal invitation to participate in the 2017 Sony Research Award Program. This program is intended to foster partnership with university faculty and researchers. It will support university research and innovation in the U.S. and Canada with the awards of up to USD $150,000 per year for each accepted proposal.

Submissions are due by 11:59 pm PDT on September 15, 2017.

For more program details including eligibility and submission guidelines, visit the Sony Research Award Program website.


C.C. Lee, Ph. D.
Senior Vice President
US Research Center
Sony Electronics Inc.

Institute for CyberScience Accepting Applications for SuperComputing ‘17 Student Travel Awards

The Institute for CyberScience (ICS) is accepting applications for the SuperComputing ‘17 Student Travel Awards. Awards will support graduate students working in computational or big data research attending the SuperComputing 2017 (SC17) conference with $1,000 to cover travel expenses and registration.

Click here to learn more and apply.

Applications are due August 15. Up to three awards will be made. Students presenting at the conference will receive preference.

Institute for CyberScience Invites Participants for ICS Associates & Affiliates Program

The Penn State Institute for CyberScience (ICS) invites researchers to participate in the ICS Associates & Affiliates Program, a way for experts whose research involves computation and big-data methods to engage with the institute and with each other.

Researchers participating in this program will be alerted of ICS and external funding opportunities, gain entry to additional advanced computing technologies, and learn about events and training related to high-performance computing, among other opportunities.

Program participants will also enhance the cyber science research community by hosting seminars, reviewing submissions for ICS funding opportunities, and sharing their expertise with other Associates and Affiliates.

The program has three levels of engagement: Associate, Affiliate (which is also open to active external collaborators), and Student Affiliate. Researchers can choose the level of engagement that best suits their needs.

“Growing the community of computational and big-data experts at Penn State is one of the core pillars of the ICS mission,” said Jenni Evans, ICS director. “I look forward to starting this new initiative to foster collaboration and share solutions on challenging interdisciplinary problems and also to increase awareness of CyberScience across the Penn State community and beyond.”

To read more details about the program and apply, click here.

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