Jeff Gold cuts the ribbon for the Experiential Learning Laboratory
Jeff Gold (MBA '78) cuts the ceremonial ribbon and officially dedicating the Jeff Gold Experiential Learning Laboratory in 2011.

UF, Warrington celebrates CEI, Experiential Learning Lab dedication

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The newly-remodeled Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation (CEI) and its Jeff Gold Experiential Learning Laboratory was officially dedicated in a ceremony Friday morning at David Stuzin Hall on the campus of the University of Florida.

“CEI’s mission is to teach, coach and inspire, and this new space is worthy of our innovative programs and students,” CEI Executive Director Jamie Kraft said. “From the technology to the design, the focus will be on creative experimentation and learning by doing.”

Among the amenities in CEI’s new facility are the Ideation Hub, which provides students space for brainstorming and creative thinking activities; the Kick Out Corridor, which allows student teams to collaborate on business planning and research activities; and the Impact Zone, which is flexible presentation space allowing for multiple uses including workshops, meetings, speaking engagements and venture pitches.

These innovative areas compose and support CEI’s centerpiece, the Jeff Gold Experiential Learning Laboratory. The Lab has three breakout rooms where students can gather for team projects and conference facilities where aspiring entrepreneurs can pitch ideas to local business owners, who will be welcome at CEI as real-world advisors. The new Center also allows ample space where students from other colleges like law and engineering can work with business students on projects like Integrated Technology Ventures and GatorNest—experiential learning programs that are the backbone of Warrington’s entrepreneurship initiative.

The Lab was made possible thanks to the generous gift of Jeff Gold (MBA ’78). Gold was named CEI’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 2004 and is a member of its Executive Committee. He has held positions as Venture Partner at Longitude Capital where he focused on investments in medical devices, Chief Executive Officer of CryoVascular Systems, Inc., Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of CardioThoracic Systems, Inc., and co-founder and President of Cordis Endovascular Systems.

“Learning by doing has always been a cornerstone of what I believe in,” said Gold, during Friday’s ceremony. “Use this space well, often and with all my blessings.”

CEI was created to teach, coach and inspire students to be entrepreneurial in their lives. The Center provides students the tools and experiences necessary to creatively pursue new opportunities and innovations in the start-up, social and corporate venture arenas. Through courses, degree programs and complementary activities such as speakers and workshops, CEI currently serves more than 2,000 students per year.