Open to faculty and graduate students at five area universities, Milwaukee’s I-Corps program links business mentors with academic participants to investigate the prospect of commercializing a research idea.
Funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Southeastern Wisconsin I-Corps Site fosters commercialization of applied academic research and faculty/student innovation. Through UWM, accepted teams are able to learn the art of customer discovery and link them to sources of early-stage funding.
Teams are composed of three members who can be students, post-docs, staff, faculty, alumni, or members of the local entrepreneurial community. See below:
- Entrepreneurial Lead (EL) is a faculty member, post-doc scholar, a student, professional staff, or alum of one of the partnering academic institutions with relevant knowledge of the technology and a deep commitment to investigate the commercial landscape surrounding the innovation.
- Academic Lead (AL) is responsible for overall project management. The AL will typically have an academic appointment that would normally qualify the AL to submit proposals or play the role of a PI in subsequent submissions to NSF.
- Mentor is an experienced or emerging entrepreneur wit experience in transitioning technology out of academic labs. The Mentor will be responsible for guiding the team forward and tracking progress.
Deadline to apply: Rolling applications for summer/fall cohorts
“Through I-Corps you conduct many interviews with potential clients. You try to figure out what the problem is in a quantifiable and objective fashion. Having done that, you are better prepared to build a product.” -Dave ClarkEnglish professor Dave Clark, who works as a writing consultant for a dozen Wisconsin companies, is developing customizable software to guide workers who are not professional writers through the writing process so they can competently produce documents like proposals and reports. With help from the UWM-led Milwaukee I-Corps program, he founded Responsive Writing Solutions LLC. Now he has a $50,000 grant through the national I-Corps program.