Applications Open for Summer 2019 NSF I-Corps Program for Faculty and Student Researchers

The STEAM Training in Entrepreneurial Practices (STEP) I-Corps Site will fund faculty and student innovators to vet the promise of new technologies during an intensive, two-week summer training program.
OEI

The STEAM Training in Entrepreneurial Practices (STEP) I-Corps Site will fund faculty and student innovators to vet the promise of new technologies during an intensive, two-week summer training program.

Students and faculty from three U of A campuses are invited to apply for a two-week summer commercialization training program to be held from May 31 to June 14.

The University of Arkansas NSF I-Corps Site, STEP (STEAM Training in Entrepreneurial Practices), builds on existing programs that accelerate the commercialization of research by faculty and students. A primary goal of the program is to encourage researchers to consider how the commercialization of their research might open new avenues of discovery and promote economic development in the state. The STEP site, launched in 2018 with a $250,000 NSF grant, builds on existing programs that accelerate the commercialization of research by faculty and students.

The STEP site will include undergraduate and graduate student teams and faculty from three UA System campuses: the University of Arkansas, the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, and the University of Arkansas Little Rock. Teams will receive funding of up to $1,000 to support their initial customer discovery efforts during the program and an additional $2,250 if their team continues to pursue the commercialization of their technology/research.

All faculty, graduate students, and undergraduates whose research holds commercial potential are encouraged to apply; the program is also open to advanced business students with an interest in technology commercialization. 

The STEP I-Corps Site is a natural precursor to the seven-week National I-Corps training program, which awards $50,000 to accepted teams. Once the National I-Corps program is complete, teams may apply to continued funding from the university's new Walton Family Charitable Support Foundation-supported Gap Fund, a subset of the Chancellor's Fund.

The STEP I-Corps Site is administered by the Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation under the direction of PI Carol Reeves, associate vice chancellor for entrepreneurship and innovation. Bob Beitle, associate vice provost for research; Ed Pohl, professor and head of the Department of Industrial Engineering; and Cynthia Sides, director of the Office of Industry Engagement, are co-PIs on the grant.

About the Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation: The mission of the University of Arkansas' Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation is to catalyze entrepreneurial activities and innovation across the university and throughout the state in order to build Arkansas' knowledge-based economy and support healthy, sustainable communities. Since 2009, students and alumni of the New Venture Development program have formed more than 40 companies and raised over $72.5 million in grants and private capital.

About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among only 2.7 percent of universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.

Contacts

Sarah Goforth, director of outreach
Walton College of Business
479-225-7185, goforth@uark.edu

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