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Rist DifferenceMaker Institute

DifferenceMakerTM is a campus-wide program that engages UMass Lowell students in creative problem solving, innovation and entrepreneurship.

Thank you Kim and Brian Rist '77, Manning School of Business, for supporting the DifferenceMaker Program with a generous contribution and the establishment of the Rist DifferenceMaker Institute.

Teams by the Numbers

A team demonstrates their entry at the DifferenceMaker 2014 Francis College of Engineering Prototyping Competition.

DifferenceMaker Season Kick-off and College Competition Announcement!

Join this kick-off event to learn more about DifferenceMaker and the three college-based competitions taking place this fall. During the event, you will meet other students, past DifferenceMaker teams, faculty, and staff, and will have the opportunity to engage in a hands-on activity. 

Date: Sept. 22
Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
Location: University Crossing,
Moloney Hall, Room 260
Register for the Kick-off Event

Food will be served.

Student standing on stage at a DifferenceMaker event

DifferenceMaker College-based Competition Applications Open!

Are you interested in winning funding and other resources to help move your idea forward? Register for one or all three college-based competitions for a chance to showcase your idea and win over $10,000 in funding.

FAHSS Creative Community Competition
Application Opens: Sept. 22 at 5 p.m.
Application Closes: Oct. 22 at 5 p.m.

Apply For the College-based Competitions Online.

Are you a DifferenceMaker®?

Do you have an idea?

Do you see a problem you want to solve?

Do you want to make a difference in your community, or in the world?

Do you want to join a team and work with other students?

Sound like you? 

Get involved

Real-Life DifferenceMakers

  • Smart Escape

    Smart Escape’s mission is to lead people to safety during a fire evacuation.

  • Tommy Vi’s Gelato, Honorable Mention

    After an increase of violence and hate crimes on the Asian-American community, Tommy Vi created a fusion of Asian flavors with Italian machinery and technique to create a new version of gelato in hopes of brining people together.

The Buzz on Social Media