The University of Connecticut recently introduced a pair of new classes for its engineering students. Experiential Technology Entrepreneurship I and II – are part of a new wave of programs and training sessions being offered at the school to promote student and faculty innovation and entrepreneurship. The courses are designed to support graduate engineering students with potential entrepreneurial ideas.
UConn aims to create cross-functional students that have both a wealth of engineering experience but also understand what is required to take new discoveries to market. The class is led by professor of practice Hadi Bozorgmanesh, senior director of engineering and physical science ventures for UConn Ventures, a branch of UConn’s Office of Economic Development that helps faculty and staff create new businesses based on their innovative technologies. “What we want to do is to build a culture that embraces the monetization of innovative ideas and provides the skills needed to put those ideas into practice,” he says. “This culture will enrich students in diverse degree programs across the entire university, and it will contribute to the state through economic development.”
As the spring term begins, the course has already hatched four new businesses, with another six poised to launch later this year. Bozorgmanesh’s hands-on business training class includes frequent guest lectures by business leaders from the start-up industry who talk to the class about avoiding the common pitfalls of startups; securing intellectual property (IP) protection; identifying and assessing commercial opportunities; developing effective marketing approaches; and finding available avenues for financing and venture capital support. Later in the year, the student entrepreneurs will “job shadow” CEOs, chief technology officers, human resource personnel, venture capitalists, tax specialists, and other decision makers so they may experience first-hand the myriad tasks and responsibilities entailed in operating a business, whether it be a startup or a large organization.
Congratulations to UConn on taking this step to ensure that their best engineering students receive the training they need to bring their individual discoveries to market.
Source: University of Connecticut