Director of Innovation and colleagues presenting the Cal State Ready project

Cal State Innovate offers several services and benefits for the CSU from funding opportunities for innovative projects to hands on support in the design process. The Innovation team values investing in the CSU’s community of innovators and strives to provides students, staff, and faculty with tools and support where it is able. Take advantage of what Cal State Innovate has to offer.

Man showing a glowing 3D cube model



The Innovation Minigrant program provides up to $10,000 in funding for exploratory projects at campuses. The grants are awarded annually and priority is placed on proposals for projects that are most likely to be able to extend to other campuses if the outcomes are positive. Minigrants have supported campus projects in virtual/augmented reality, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, internet of things, blockchain, mesh networking, and robotic telepresence.

With the first round of minigrants awarded in the spring of 2017, recipients have reported that  67% used the funding to explore an emerging technology and 33% used funds test a solution related to student success. Nearly all respondents (89%) said that the outcome of the project was a prototype. 67% of awardees have presented findings at a professional conference, while others have disseminated outcomes via websites, articles, and journal publications.

The call for proposals for minigrant applications opens before fall semester, and the next round is scheduled to open in summer 2022. Once it opens the application will be available here.

Innovation course badge of completion. A hexagonal badge with a red ribbon across the bottom with four icons representing the course modules.


Foundations in Innovation Course

Innovation- Some may consider it to be an edgy buzzword or synonymous with the latest technological advances. But the truth is, innovation can be boiled down to describe just a simple, good idea that addresses modern challenges. Cal State Innovate offers a professional development course that offers practical tools and insight to help individuals employ innovate thinking, processing, design, and collaboration.

Participants will navigate the six week course in a cohort, yet still have the ability to work through each module in a self-directed pace. A digital credential will be awarded at the completion of the course. Reserve your spot in the next cohort!

UX Design Consultations and Services

Cal State Innovate supports the CSU at all levels with consultative user experience/user interface (UX/UI) services at all stages of project development. Whether it’s assisting user research, drafting rapid prototypes, or helping to facilitate usability testing, the UX Designer can come alongside you team and provide both short term and long term services to help your project have user-centered design.


  • Design Thinking, Goal Setting & Scope Planning
  • Understanding Users
  • Research Assistance & Analysis 


  • Information Architecture & Site Mapping  
  • Wireframing and High-Fidelity Prototyping
  • Branding & Visual Design  


  • General Usability and Accessibility
  • Usability Tests
  • A/B Split Testing