Cuban Innovation & Entrepreneurship Front and Center after President Obama’s Announcement
By Business Wire News
By Business Wire News
On the heels of President Obama’s announcement reinstating diplomatic relations with Cuba, C.A.A., a privately funded, not-for-profit foundation based in Greenwich, Conn., has announced Innovadores, the first-ever initiative to promote entrepreneurship, opportunity, networking, mentoring, and resources for promising innovators in Cuba. The program will host young Cuban innovators in the fields of Science, Tech, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEM) and expose them to American entrepreneurial practice inside the Grand Central Tech incubator, located at the former Facebook headquarters in Manhattan.
The program was conceived and executed with the support of Cuban officials who recently welcomed C.A.A. in Havana. Subject to proper processing of passports and visas, six young Cuban finalists drawn from throughout Cuba have been selected to attend the program, which runs from July 6 through August 16. These interns will then return home to Cuba to help foster innovation in their homeland. Young innovators submitted applications through the C.A.A. website, and met with foundation representatives at a reception on June 25 in Miramar, Havana.
John Caulfield, former Chief of Mission of the U.S. Interests Section in Havana, said, “The C.A.A. program is a bet on Cuba’s future; a future which will be more encouraging as Cuba moves to implement economic reforms. These young people represent hope for a more promising relationship between Cuba and the U.S. in the years to come.”
C.A.A. was founded by Miles Spencer, a tech entrepreneur, angel investor, explorer, and former host of PBS TV Show “MoneyHunt.” C.A.A. looks to eventually host these and other innovators at the C.A.A. “Innovation Factory” in Havana, Cuba, subject to local and federal approvals.
“Timing is indeed everything, and now is the time for great programs like this to set the groundwork for diplomatic ties between Cuba and the U.S.,” said Spencer. “I believe talent is equally dispersed around the globe and this program is a perfect example. It allows Cuban innovators to get the mentorship and support they need to create solutions in Cuba that make life in Cuba better. I am humbled by the support we have been given by Cuban officials and Ambassador DeLaurentis and am committed to delivering this unique and valuable exchange between the two countries.”
C.A.A. is a non-profit organization that supports the development of students 16 to 20 years old who have demonstrated exceptional talent in science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics (STEM). The objective is to create an environment where new ideas in these areas can be developed through joint efforts under the mentorship of top professionals in their fields.