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Lone Star College to host Texas Open Innovation Conference in March

Lone Star College and the Energy Conference Network will host the second annual Texas Open Innovation Conference (TOIC) March 28 – 29, at LSC-University Park in Houston.

The conference is a forum in which business, government and academia converge to explore the latest developments in open innovation, collaboration and industry partnerships. As an important engine of economic development and growth, LSC promotes Houston as an emerging leader in innovation. TOIC will bring national leaders together in Houston to learn from in-depth case studies, interact with panel discussions, and network with peers.

“LSC is proud to host TOIC this year, especially considering the success of last year’s conference,” said Stephen C. Head, Ph.D., LSC chancellor. “The exchange of ideas helps fuel growth and innovation, and the conversations and partnerships that emanate from this event will undoubtedly benefit our community and the businesses and organizations that attend.”

Over 150 industry leaders attended the first TOIC in March 2017. Hosting the national conference for the second time demonstrates LSC-University Park’s commitment to innovation and new ideas. The college was built on a focus on student success and an Invitation 2 Innovate (i2i), a vision that provides students with transformative opportunities from education to career.

“The conference offers exciting opportunities for different industries to network and learn from each other’s success and ideas,” said Dr. Shah Ardalan, LSC-University Park president. “Our speakers will provide a creative platform for considering new and cutting-edge practices and encourage open dialogue of concepts related to the evolution of ideas into reality. Innovative practices will lead to discoveries in every field that our students may pursue, including those that we cannot imagine today.”

The 2018 TOIC will provide discussion on topics in a range of industries, including energy, education, technology and health care. The conference also includes newly-developed sessions on Think Tanks and Design Thinking, in which participants will work on actual issues linked to business and community. Highlighted speakers include:

  • Dave Stover, chairman, president and CEO, Noble Energy;
  • Keith Barber, CEO, Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital;
  • Michael Matthews, assistant vice president for technology and innovation and chief information officer, Oral Roberts University;
  • Dr. Bret Champion, superintendent, Klein Independent School District;
  • Amanda Edwards, At-Large Position 4, Houston City Council;
  • Jack Cagle, Harris County Commissioner Precinct 4;
  • Mark Linesch, vice president of strategy, Hewlett Packard Enterprise CTO Office and Labs.

“Advancing discussion and open exchange of concepts across all areas is vital to economic growth in Houston now more than ever,” said Energy Conference Network CEO Symon Rubens. “Executives realize that encouraging innovation and collaboration across organizations and industries will exponentially improve outcomes.”

Current sponsors for the conference are Cisco, Planbox, Wellspring and Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital.

TOIC organizers welcome community and industry leaders to participate as attendees, vendors or sponsors. Early Bird Registration savings end Friday, Feb. 16. Visit www.TexasOpenInnovation.com to register, view a full list of speakers, and learn more about the conference and sessions.


LSC-University Park is one of the fastest growing community colleges in the country. Located in the former world headquarters of Compaq Computer across 71 acres, it offers a variety of associate degrees and fast-track certifications that meet the needs of today’s workforce. The College also houses a University Center in partnership with University of Houston-Downtown. Standout facilities include the Center for Science and Innovation, an Energy and Manufacturing Institute, a high-tech Innovation Room, and charter high school iSchoolHigh. The mixed-use complex also houses several partners and Lone Star Corporate College. Under President Shah Ardalan, LSC-University Park has been recognized nationally as a model for innovative colleges of the 21st century. The college sits at the corner of State Highway 249 and Louetta Road in northwest Houston. For more information about LSC-University Park, call 281.290.2600 or visit LoneStar.edu/UP.

Lone Star College offers high-quality, low-cost academic transfer and career training education to 99,000 students each semester. LSC is training tomorrow’s workforce today and redefining the community college experience to support student success. Stephen C. Head, Ph.D., serves as chancellor of LSC, the largest institution of higher education in the Houston area with an annual economic impact of $3.1 billion. LSC consists of six colleges, eight centers, two university centers, Lone Star Corporate College and LSC-Online. To learn more, visit LoneStar.edu.