Launch Lab

Facilitating Creative Solutions to Challenging Problems



YSU Launch Lab will lead the University and the region by driving the advancement of creative learning and research in an interdisciplinary collaborative environment. YSU Launch Lab will provide learning space that exposes students and faculty from all areas of study to innovative thinking, inspired design, advanced manufacturing and entrepreneurial commercialization.


The mission of Launch Lab is to establish the YSU campus as a focal point that will:

  • ​Educate, train and transform diverse learners into effective problem-solvers and innovators
  • Facilitate collaborative and interdisciplinary approaches in order to bring concepts into reality
  • Achieve this through access to facilities and equipment, curricular pathways, community outreach, shared ownership and being a portal to other assets on YSU campus


Launch lab is the outgrowth of a collaborative effort between the Colleges of Creative Arts and Communication (CCAC), Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), and now including the Williamson College of Business Administration (WCBA) to bring the strengths of all programs together for a learning experience that is more than the sum of its constituents. Interest from students and faculty coupled with the proximity of the America Makes Center, the Youngstown Business Incubator, and the Center for Innovation in Additive Manufacturing (CIAM) have fostered the growth Launch Lab which now includes 15 participating faculty from the three colleges.


Launch Lab provides a collaborative learning environment that encourages diverse disciplines to share their strengths while reaching beyond their traditional methodologies. Engineers and business majors will make creative leaps when working with art students. Art and engineering students will begin to think strategically about what they are making, and art and business majors will learn to analyze complex problems logically. Creative thinking, logical problem solving, strategic planning, economic analysis and manufacturing processes are just some of the skills that, when combined, can lead to transformational solutions to the issues that society faces.


Launch Lab will provide YSU students and faculty with access to a vast array of advanced manufacturing equipment, such as 3D scanners, printers and CNC routers, and additionally to a variety of instructional labs featuring computers, automation / robotics, metals foundry, ceramics, and woodworking.  These facilities will be available for both course work and independent / extracurricular projects.  This effort supports educational initiatives as well as opportunities for cross-disciplinary collaboration for a more balanced, well-rounded graduate who is ready to effectively contribute to the work force. The specific objectives of the project are:

(1) To promote significant learning experiences within art, business, and engineering courses through the use of digital manufacturing technologies

(2) To promote exceptional learning experiences that allow students to experience how advanced manufacturing and design add value to the commercialization of goods and services

(3) To encourage cross-disciplinary learning experiences among engineering, art, and business students through the use of advanced manufacturing technologies and shared instructional spaces

(4) To stimulate imagination and creativity by providing access to equipment, resources, and training so that students fulfill limitless possibilities