UVM Innovations, the Vermont Department of Economic Development, and the Vermont Center for Emerging Technologies (VCET) are pleased to host an I-Corps Short Course in Burlington this fall!

In this free two-week course, academic researchers and early startups working on a tech innovation will receive entrepreneurship training and strong mentor support, as they “get out of the lab” and talk with customers to identify the best product-market fit.

Vermont-based researchers may apply with a team of 1-3 people. Up to 10 teams will be selected.

Teams who successfully complete this I-Corps short course can become eligible to apply for the National Science Foundation’s I-Corps Teams program, which includes a $50,000 grant.

Apply Now!

Burlington Course Dates:

  • October 16 (8am – 4:30pm) – Kickoff workshop (In person)
  • October 23 (2pm-3pm) – Progress update and coaching (Online)
  • October 30 (2pm-3pm) – Progress update and coaching (Online)
  • November 2 (8am – 12pm) – Closing Workshop (In person)

How It Works:

  • The course begins with an in-person Kickoff workshop (one full day), where teams learn how to use the Business Model Canvas, a hypothesis-testing methodology and customer discovery interviews to explore if there’s a viable market fit for their product idea.
  • Over 2 weeks, teams go out and talk to potential customers about their needs, with the goal of completing 30 interviews.
  • Each week, teams attend a 1-hour video check in to share progress updates and get coaching from the instructors.
  • The short course ends with an in-person Closing workshop (half day) where teams present their findings, get more coaching, and learn about next steps with NSF I-Corps and other entrepreneurship programs.

 Who Should Apply?

Vermont-based academic researchers, early startups and student entrepreneurs who:

  • Have a tech innovation in any STEM field & want to explore its commercialization potential
  • Are willing to find & talk to 30 potential customers in 2 weeks
  • May want to apply for the NSF I-Corps Teams national program and $50,000 grant
  • Have 1-3 team members who can participate in the Short Course dates, including
    • Required: one “Entrepreneurial Lead” (typically a Grad student or Postdoc, sometimes an undergrad, with interest in pursuing a startup based on the technology)
    • Optional: one “Technical Lead” (Faculty or senior lab staff) and on “Industry Mentor” (experienced entrepreneur) who will support the EL in their market exploration.

The I-Corps Short Course is being led by the UNY I-Corps Node – one of eight NSF-funded Innovation Corps Nodes designed to support regional needs for innovation education, infrastructure and research. I-Corps Nodes work cooperatively to build, utilize and sustain a national innovation ecosystem that further enhances the development of technologies, products and processes that benefit society.


New BioBeer September 20th!

by VBSA-admin on July 31, 2018

SAVE THE DATE! The VBSA is adding a fall Bio-only Beer on September 20th from 5:00 to 7:00 pm at Queen City Brewery! The new BioBeer event will feature a short talk by Dr. Grant Henderson, formerly a Chemical Engineer with Lonza. Register here.

Come to one of Burlington’s coolest breweries and enjoy networking with others in the biotech field while enjoying craft beer and pizza! Whether you’re new to the Vermont biosciences community or want to catch up with old acquaintances, we look forward to welcoming you. 



Are you a start up or a small bioscience business? The VBSA and VCET are hosting David Fleischer of Business Resource Services in a FREE seminar on the benefits of R&D tax credits. Learn how this tax credit can allow qualified small businesses to receive significant cash benefits to offset payroll taxes and income tax liabilities.

The seminar will be held at VCET in Burlington on August 8th, 2018 from 5:00 to 6:00 pm. Click here to register in advance!