Global Idea Connection

This week DifferenceMaker held its first ever Global Idea Connection! The event was held from 9:00am to 11:00am at DifferenceMaker Central. UMass Lowell students attended the event and Skyped with students from B.V. Bhoomaraddi College of Engineering and Technology (BVB) in Hubli, India.

The Idea Connection was organized by Ashwin Mehta, Lecturer at UMass Lowell’s Manning School of Business, and Nitin Kulkarni, an Associate Professor in BVB’s Department of Management Studies. The two universities have a study abroad program where students from the U.S. visit Hubli and vice-versa. The Idea Connection fits hand-in-hand with the study abroad program, of which the idea is to promote a global thought process when approaching innovation and entrepreneurship.

During the Idea Connection, students were encouraged to share their entrepreneurial ideas and share with the other college where they needed help. The goal is to create global and interdisciplinary teams for a pitch contest, or for the students to team up and participate in DifferenceMaker’s 2016 Idea Challenge. Photos from the event are below.

11204445_1079632275415988_867191796489689289_n 12219327_1079632325415983_254736858628761474_n 12249855_1079632462082636_7192656568152301504_n

Student & Alumni Mixer | October 21, 2015

On the evening of Wednesday, October 21st DifferenceMaker held its first Student and Alumni Mixer. Roughly 130 people were in attendance, including about 50 students, and about 80 faculty, staff, and alumni. The event was a way for alumni who fund the program, serve as mentors to student teams, and who have interest in the program to meet and network with students and DifferenceMaker teams.


The evening began with networking and continued with a student panel and an alumni panel. Student teams, Biobubbler, Love of the Game, and Nonspec, answered questions about their experience with the DifferenceMaker program and the current status of their projects. Afterward, alumni took the stage sharing their insight on the success of the program.


Rachel Paquette from DifferenceMaker Team Biobubbler.

The night concluded with the keynote speaker, Ron Insana. Insana is an Analyst and Commentator at CNBC. He enlightened the crowd with his input on the United States’ current economic status and some input on the business world.


Steven Tello, Associate Vice Chancellor for Entrepreneurhip and Economic Development, and Ron Insana, Senior Analyst and Commentator at CNBC.

Thank you to everyone who attended and to everyone who made the event such a success! To view all of the photos from the event, click here.

Love of the Game Expanding on Campus


Love of the Game won the Significant Social Impact category in our 2015 DifferenceMaker Idea Challenge and was awarded $4,000. Team members include Jessica Dion (Exercise Physiology, class of 2016), Lucas Parsons (Exercise Physiology, class of 2016), Jennifer Pisarik (Exercise Physiology, class of 2017), Marissa Richards (Psychology, Class of 2018), Tyler Richards (Psychology, class of 2018), Rachel Silk (Junior, Business Marketing and Entrepreneurship, class of 2016), Matthew Short (Exercise Physiology, class of 2019), and Daniel Schmith (Freshman, Business Finance and Entrepreneurship, class of 2018).

Since winning in the Idea Challenge, this team has been hard at work at DifferenceMaker Central and the community to reach their goal of becoming a nonprofit organization that partners with local universities to teach sports to individuals with developmental disabilities. Since winning funding in the Idea Challenge, they have expanded their team and developed a presence on campus, planned and held their first event, pitched at Convocation and won $1,000, connected with local schools and similar nonprofits, and are currently working on establishing a Love of the Game club on the UML campus. They have also been fortunate enough to connect with a mentor, Tammy Concannon who works at Corporate Technologies and has helped the team develop their finances and operations.

The group held their first event on Sunday October 18th at the UMass Lowell Campus Recreation Center on East Campus. Roughly 15 local students with developmental disabilities attended the event and the UMass Lowell Men’s Varsity Basketball team led them through basketball training. The event was educational, fun, and rewarding for all in attendance. Love of the Game plans to expand their presence on campus to hold several events a semester while they apply to become a nonprofit organization. Below are photos from their first event.

10501716_1067933213252561_8179284862764456464_n  12143298_1067933203252562_6874722567938668556_n


You can learn more about Love of the Game by watching this video from the Lowell Sun. If you want to help Love of the Game reach their monetary goals, you can donate through Hawk Hatch by clicking here. Anything helps! 

If you want help the team by volunteering or mentoring, you can email them at