Verizon Wireless CEO to Lead Panel Discussion on Innovation (update)

UPDATE - Monday, April 7: Watch a replay of Dan Mead's panel discussion at Start-up Week 2014 here.

April 4 - Whether you’re leading a multi-billion dollar corporation or launching a new start-up, innovation and risk-taking are crucial components needed for success.

That’s the message Verizon Wireless President and CEO Dan Mead will take to his alma mater on Monday, April 7, as he kicks off Start-up Week 2014 at Penn State’s College of Information Sciences and Technology.

Now in its third year, Start-up Week will feature 43 speakers, including 31 Penn State alums who will share their success stories, demonstrate cutting-edge products and provide advice on what it takes to stand out from the crowd in Silicon Valley and beyond.

Mead will be the keynote speaker for the “Driving Innovation through Technology” panel, which will also feature Penn State alums Chris Creager, Verizon senior vice president of corporate product management and development, and Nicola Palmer, Verizon Wireless senior vice president and chief network officer, as well as Yaopeng Zhou, co-founder and CEO of Smart Vision Labs and a Verizon Powerful Answers Award winner in 2013.

Mead and the panelists will discuss how Verizon’s wireless and broadband networks are fueling innovation on a global scale, and new products and services being developed at the Verizon Innovation Centers as a result of the Powerful Answers Award challenge.

“Verizon is working with entrepreneurs, app developers and device manufacturers to interface with our networks and bring next-generation connected products and solutions to market,” Mead said. “Our networks provide a platform for innovation that can change the game and deliver value for both business and society.”

Students attending the event will have an opportunity to see several of these innovations at the Verizon Wireless Innovation Center demonstration area. Featured products include VGo, a telepresence unit that allows a person to take part in activities from a distant location, allowing medical professionals to talk face-to-face with patients from afar or homebound students to attend classes remotely; and Golden-i, a wireless headset that can be worn by first responders, helping them to see through thick smoke or fallen debris.

Last year, Verizon launched its Powerful Answers Award program, designed to inspire entrepreneurs to use wireless technology to help solve some of the world’s biggest challenges in the fields of education, healthcare and sustainability.

Smart Vision Labs was the top winner in the healthcare area in 2013, winning $1 million for its portable examination device that with a single snapshot, measures refractive errors of the eye and generates prescriptions – all without requiring an in-person visit to a doctor.

Yesterday, Verizon began accepting applications for the Verizon Powerful Answers 2014 competition. This year’s competition will seek innovations to solve problems in education, healthcare, sustainability and transportation.