Members of the Central Texas business and research communities will gather Tuesday at Embassy Suites, 1001 E. McCarty Lane, to discuss the growing influence of the San Marcos region and Texas State University on technology.

Adriana Cruz, president of the Greater San Marcos Partnership, which provides economic development services to areas of Hays and Caldwell counties, said Texas State has been “very smart and very strategic” in how it has developed its engineering program.

The university has focused on areas of engineering that were not being covered at the University of Texas at Austin, Cruz said.

“Over the past several years [Texas State University]—with their science and engineering college, materials science and Ph.D. program, which is unique in the country—really has some areas of specialization that can’t be found anywhere else and some equipment that can’t be found anywhere else,” she said.

At the summit, updates will be given on research funding growth at the university, the Texas State Innovation Lab at South by Southwest 2017, the expansion of the university’s engineering program and development of a new Ph.D. program in computer science.

The event will also feature an update on the growth of the university’s Science, Technology and Research, or STAR, Park.

The park exists to stoke research and commercialization of technologies in materials science, advanced manufacturing and other areas. STAR Park has expanded since opening, but is still 100 percent occupied because of a high level of interest from companies, Cruz said.

“The plan they had for when it was going to grow and at what point they were going to start building the other buildings was several years down the road,” she said. “They’ve accelerated their timeline just because so many companies are coming in and saying this is the type of research partnership we want and we need.”

Cruz called the growth of STAR Park “a great success story.”

“One of the things we’re trying to do through the innovation summit is tell that story,” Cruz said. “We want to make sure that when people think of innovation they understand that Texas State and San Marcos are playing a critical role in the new industries of the future and in the development of this corridor.”

David Anderson, president of SEMI Americas, a group focused on fostering growth in the nano electronics field, will speak at the event. Molly Kocialski, director of the Rocky Mountain United States Patent and Trademark Office, will also speak at the event and will host a presentation on patenting strategies after the summit at STAR Park. The patent presentation will be free of charge and will take place in the STAR One conference center.

The event will also feature the presentation of the Dick Burdick Innovation award, which will be presented to a company using technology in new and innovative ways.

The event will take place from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. It is open to the public, and tickets and tables are available for purchase at