Through a partnership with a network in nearly 200 colleges throughout the US, we support the launch and early incubation of student-led invention-based enterprises and the iterative refinement of customer need, technological invention, and a self-sustaining business proposition. We support creation of enterprises that have the potential to be self-sustaining and scalable, as well as attractive to downstream investors.
Supported through our partnership with VentureWell (formerly NCIIA), we work to:
- Provide nascent student start-ups with early stage funding
- Help collegiate teams with business strategy development, mentoring, and investment
- Provide faculty with funding for courses and programs in tech entrepreneurship, opportunities for recognition, and entrepreneurship education training and networking
New inventions create new businesses, and new businesses create new jobs. A nation that cannot create and manufacture new products based on inventions is destined to decline.” – Jerome Lemelson
Through their programs, VentureWell has helped launch more than 180 companies, leveraging more than $365 million in additional funding. Companies launched include:
- Ecovative, a company founded by two Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) graduates who have – under the tutelage of RPI professor Burt Swersey – created a line of mushroom-based biodegradable products for use in packing, building, automotive, and other applications through their rapidly growing company.
- Natural Composites, founded by a student-faculty team at Baylor University, Natural Composites converts agriculture waste such as coconut shell into engineering products, including injection-molded plastics and other products for a range of industries. Since receiving VentureWell support in 2006, the company has gone on to secure over $5 million in additional funding.
- Sproxil, a company developed by a group of student innovators in Computer Science out of Dartmouth College which has developed a mobile SMS technology that enables consumers to detect counterfeit pharmaceuticals. They have over 1 million users after 2 years of operation.
- Brilliance, a low-cost, low maintenance phototherapy device to treat neonatal jaundice initially developed at Stanford University and commercialized by D-Rev.