Expansion of Our Technical Entrepreneurship Program

University of Miami, 2006 - $6,500

With support from a NCIIA course and program grant the University of Miami first offered Technical Entrepreneurship (TE) in the Department of Biomedical Engineering in 1999. NCIIA then awarded a second grant to continue the course, expanding it to other engineering students and offering it as an alternative to the mandatory Senior Design Project course. To date, more than 100 students have completed the TE sequence with good results, and several E-Teams have been awarded grants. One project led to a patent application, and many others have led to invention disclosures.

This grant allows for further expansion of the course, revising it to meet important new goals. New aspects include the following: 1) Transforming TE into a truly interdisciplinary course, including students from other disciplines by adding faculty and other partners. 2) Collaborating with the School of Business Administration to include business students in E-Teams for SBA credits. 3) Establishing a dedicated design and prototyping studio to replace the lab that was destroyed in a fire. 4) Restructuring the lecture series to improve student selection of projects, searches for existing work, budgeting and discussions on the design process, prototyping, testing, documentation, and the legal and business aspects of entrepreneurship. 5) Create structures for sustaining promising E-Team projects beyond graduation. Some of the TE course renovations may be transferable to NCIIA-funded courses at other institutions.