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Academic And Professional Resources For Student Led Technology Ventures

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Product and Venture Creation Curriculum

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.151.1 - 8.151.13



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Paper Authors

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Richard Brown

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Michael McCorquodale

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1654

Academic and Professional Resources for Student-Led Technology Ventures

Michael S. McCorquodale and Richard B. Brown

Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Center for Wireless Integrated Microsystems University of Michigan Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-2122


Student researchers face daunting challenges when attempting to commercialize technology that they have developed. Engineering students typically lack an overall understanding of the com- mercialization process associated with academic research. Furthermore, the resources required span several disciplines including law, business, and engineering. Only recently have engineering programs included entrepreneurial courses covering the basic concepts that are essential for tech- nology business development. At the University of Michigan, such courses include an MBA busi- ness plan development sequence that is elected by an increasing number of engineering graduate students, an undergraduate engineering course in business plan development, and a patent law class specifically for engineering students. Academic resources such as these significantly increase the likelihood of stimulating student entrepreneurial activity and of successful commer- cialization of university research. However, these resources alone are typically insufficient. Pro- fessional resources, such as those offered by the Office of Technology Transfer and the Sam Zell and Robert H. Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies at Michigan, provide business develop- ment support ranging from one-on-one business development counseling to grant programs for emerging businesses. This paper discusses a complete process of commercializing engineering research. Critical academic and professional resources supporting this process are described as well as how these resources have fostered entrepreneurial activity, contributing to successful com- mercialization of engineering research at the University of Michigan. Several of the challenges faced by the student entrepreneur have been addressed by these resources at Michigan, while oth- ers still require development that is underway. Here the authors report on these activities, while aspiring to foster inspiration for the development of entrepreneurial resources at engineering insti- tutions across the country.

I. Commercialization of Engineering Research

A. An Engineering Student Researcher’s Perspective Graduate student researchers are all too often completely isolated from any notion of commercial- izing their research, so it appears as a daunting challenge to the student. The irony of this circum- stance is that a great deal of engineering research has tremendous commercial potential. Moreover, engineering students are quite prone to having interest in emerging businesses given

Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Brown, R., & McCorquodale, M. (2003, June), Academic And Professional Resources For Student Led Technology Ventures Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12476

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