Mtech's Mission

    The mission of the Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech), a unit of the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland, is to:

    • Educate the next generation of technology entrepreneurs;
    • Create successful technology ventures; and
    • Connect Maryland companies with university resources to help them succeed.

    Mtech has built a comprehensive entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem at the University of Maryland. Its programs arm top students from around the world with the knowledge of how to successfully launch companies and guide aspiring and existing entrepreneurs through the entire lifecycle of launching and maintaining technology-based ventures.

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    Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute


    Program details


    All UMD professors, research staff, postdocs, graduate students, and undergraduate students with potentially commercializable research or technology-based business ideas are eligible and encouraged to apply. UMD also welcomes researchers and technology entrepreneurs from the University System of Maryland  and from the broader region to apply to the program. While individuals may certainly apply to the course, participants are encouraged to apply as a team of at least two members, and to apply with an industry mentor to support you in the program.


    UMD’s Introduction to I-Corps Course is a short, intense, bootcamp-style cohort. Participants work closely with teammates, other teams, and with mentors and instructors to develop business models around their innovations. Courses are approximately two weeks in duration, with the cohort meeting three or four times during the two-week span. Teams must also commit to conducting a significant number of customer interviews during the two weeks, and to completing asynchronous assignments. Participants should plan on spending 10-15 hours/week of their time on I-Corps during these two weeks.

    Course Content

    This short I-Corps course will introduce you to the concepts of business model generation and the process of customer discovery. The course will give you the tools to begin to determine whether your innovation, in its current stage, has product-market fit.

    "Customer discovery is invaluable because it forces you to challenge your assumptions and to refine your ideas before investing too much time and money. I now find myself evaluating all sorts of products in this light."

    —Lisa Kuder, Entomology PhD Candidate, University of Maryland, June 2018 Cohort


    The Introduction to I-Corps Courses at UMD are free to all participants.

    Teams that complete this regional program and proceed to NSF’s national I-Corps Teams programs are eligible to receive $50,000 non-dilutive grants.


    UMD offers Introduction to I-Corps classes several times each year. Click here for a list of upcoming cohorts at UMD. Click here for a list of upcoming cohorts at I-Corps partner universities in the region.

    Next Steps

    After successful completion of the Introduction to I-Corps Course, teams may be eligible to apply to NSF’s national I-Corps Teams program. Teams will also be well-positioned to pursue TEDCO MII awards, MIPS funding, SBIR/STTR and other support and funding programs.

    Upcoming cohort dates >>