Utah needs Silicon Slopes and Silicon Slopes needs the University of Utah.
President Taylor Randall and Senior Vice President for Health Science Mike Good made the case this week at the 2023 Silicon Slopes Summit. As Utah’s tech and innovation sector continues to grow, the University of Utah is a key contributor to that success.
“Between the enterprises that we have started and that are captive within the university and also our research, we add almost $1.5 billion to the state’s economy every year,” said U President Taylor Randall.
This contribution is something Clint Betts, the CEO of the Utah non-profit dedicated to supporting the state’s tech community, acknowledged during his opening remarks at the summit on Wednesday.
“Utah is lucky to have the University of Utah as its flagship institution,” Betts said.
The U grants more STEM degrees than all other public institutions combined in the state and produces almost half of Utah’s engineering graduates. Between those numbers and the school’s new Fintech hub, No. 1-ranked game design program, and efforts to lead ethical artificial intelligence adaptation, partnerships between the U and Silicon Slopes just make sense, the president said.
“We want to be known first and foremost for innovation and feeding Silicon Slopes and helping you develop the companies that you want to develop through the talent that we can provide you and also through the invention and innovation that occurs in our research labs every single day,” Randall said.
With the U as an event sponsor, Randall was joined by U Health CEO Good to kick off this year’s summit. Both Randall and Good hold leadership positions in Silicon Slopes. Randall is on the Silicon Slopes Board of Directors, and Good is co-chair of the new Silicon Slopes Health Board.
“We’re here today to double down on our relationship with Silicon Slopes,” Randall said. “We want to be here as a resource to all of your companies.”
Silicon Slopes Health Plans are one such resource. Launched just over a year ago, the partnership between U Health and Silicon Slopes provides a healthcare solution for small companies.
“It’s designed to focus on you and your employees and how we can come together, bringing data science, technology and world-class healthcare together in a new and exciting way,” said Good.
According to Good, healthcare collaboration between the U and other Silicon Slopes leaders will be a two-way street.
“I want your help,” he said. “I want you to tell me how we can improve healthcare and health and do it in a way that fits your lifestyle. I want you to partner with us as the founding healthcare partner of Silicon Slopes to figure out how to take your practices and incorporate them into our own healthcare system and delivery.”