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Senior Design Project Commercialization And Entrepreneurship

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Entrepreneurship, Design, and PBL

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.1104.1 - 10.1104.16



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Paper Authors

author page

Ken Ports

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

Senior Design Project Commercialization and Entrepreneurship Ken Ports, Carmo D’Cruz, Muzaffar Shaikh, Carolyn Fausnaugh Florida Institute of Technology

Abstract This paper describes the development and growth of an innovative new program that is a synergistic combination of Florida Tech’s technology commercialization-related course offerings in Engineering Management, its Senior Design course curriculum, and its new business accelerator, Florida TechStart. The program is designed for the subset of senior design course students who desire to leverage their design course experience by commercializing their innovative products and technologies and creating start-up companies.

Florida Tech’s engineering management curriculum offers innovative courses in technical marketing, high tech product strategy, fast cycle time product development & launch, and engineering entrepreneurship. In these case study courses, students develop real world marketing and business plans for commercializing innovative new products and technologies. Some of the innovative product development and technology commercialization ideas have won accolades at regional business idea pitching competitions.

All students in the Florida Tech College of Engineering must participate in a senior design program. The intensive undergraduate engineering programs at the university have resulted in a number of outstanding crossfunctional Senior Design Projects. The Senior Design program is highly coordinated across all the engineering departments and structured for improved quality and effectiveness. There is a growing interest by teams in commercializing the project results.

Florida TechStart is a business accelerator for high-tech ventures, and provides a networking forum for inventors, corporate sponsors, investors and business service providers. It is designed to facilitate the creation of start-up, technology-based, revenue generating ventures.

The paper will explain the relevant operations of each of these entities and how they work closely together to the advantage of their student constituents. It will also provide an update on our current project pipeline.

Introduction There has been a considerable demand for Engineering Entrepreneurship and Technology Commercialization in Brevard County, Florida. This is because of the available high tech talent due to the proximity of NASA / Kennedy Space Center, defense contractors such as Harris Corp., Northrop Grumman, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and the growing wireless and high tech industry in the Brevard area. There are a number of talented engineers who have the necessary technical background and innovative ideas, but do not have the knowledge to commercialize and start a business around these ideas. Also, because of the uncertainties over the NASA / Aerospace and Defense budgets and the downturn in the Telecom industry, many engineers are

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Ports, K. (2005, June), Senior Design Project Commercialization And Entrepreneurship Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--14730

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