Open to faculty and students at five area universities, Milwaukee I-Corps™ Program links new venture and business mentors with academics to investigate the pathways for commercializing research ideas.


Bringing Research to the Marketplace

The National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Innovation Corps (I-Corps™) program uses experiential education to help researchers gain valuable insight into entrepreneurship, starting a business or industry requirements and challenges.

I-Corps™ enables the transformation of invention to impact. The curriculum integrates scientific inquiry and industrial discovery in an inclusive, data-driven culture driven by rigor, relevance, and evidence. Through I-Corps™ training, researchers can reduce the time to translate a promising idea from the laboratory to the marketplace.

The program is delivered through the I-Corps™ Site of Southeastern Wisconsin, established in 2015 by UWM and the UWM Research Foundation. To date, more than 120 academic entrepreneurial teams have completed the program.

Four-Week Core Program (five Monday nights, 6-8pm)

Participants are coached on designing and validating a business model around their idea throughout a four-week workshop. The last session invites teams to present on lessons learned as well as a closing reception. Program participants affiliated with the I-Corps™ Site partnering academic institutions (UWM, MU, MSOE, MCW and CUW) are eligible to receive a mini-grant to support travel, and other customer discovery activities.

Customer Discovery

The I-Corps™ Program uses a disciplined, hypothesis-based methodology (Lean Launch) to explore markets through the “customer discovery” process. I-Corps™ teams consisting of academics and business mentors are challenged to conduct at least 40 customer interviews in an intense four-week program.

Regional Partnerships

The Milwaukee I-Corps™ Site supports not only UWM, but other academic institutions in Milwaukee as well – including the Medical College of Wisconsin, Marquette University, the Milwaukee School of Engineering, and Concordia University.

Milwaukee I-Corps™ Team

profile photoAvdeev, IlyaAssociate Professor / Director of InnovationMechanical Engineering / Lubar Entrepreneurship Center(414) 229-6949avdeev@uwm.eduEng & Math Sciences 975

Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering 
Director of Innovation,
Core Team, Milwaukee I-Corps™

profile photoHunter III, JamesAdjunct Asst ProfLubar School of Business(414) 758-0183jhhunter@uwm.eduLubar Hall N386

Adjunct Asst Prof, Business

Adjunct Faculty, Milwaukee I-Corps™

profile photoMoore Jr., ElmerUWM Lubar Entrepreneurship Centermoore437@uwm.eduLubar Entrepreneurship Center

Adjunct Faculty, Milwaukee I-Corps™

profile photoPeters, Paige

Adjunct Faculty, Milwaukee I-Corps™

profile photoPeterson, LorenEntrepreneurial AdvisorEAS-MKE, LLCloren.g.peterson@gmail.comUWM Lubar Entrepreneurship Center

Entrepreneurial Advisor, EAS-MKE, LLC
Core Team, Milwaukee I-Corps™

profile photoThompson, BrianPresident / DirectorUWMRF / LEC(414) 906-4653briant@uwmrf.orgUWM Lubar Entrepreneurship Center 210

President, UWMRF
Core Team, Milwaukee I-Corps™

profile photoVisuri, Steve

Adjunct Faculty, Milwaukee I-Corps™

profile photoWright, GeneMSOE Rader School of

Director, Graduate Management Programs

Instructor, Engineering Management

Adjunct Faculty, Milwaukee I-Corps™


companies formed

customer interviews