Timing + Requirements
Do you have an idea for a startup in STEM? It’s time to test it with potential customers!
Through a grant from NSF, the I-Corps program works with Penn faculty, staff, post-docs, and students to test and validate startup ideas through Customer Discovery.
Participants learn valuable skills on connecting with customers, asking the right questions, and how to find partners to help get your startup off the ground. Plus teams are awarded grants of up to $2000 for participating!
Applications can be submitted at any time and are reviewed on a rolling basis. The final application deadline for the Spring 2021 cohort is Wed, Feb 24.
Course Start Date: Friday, March 19 (View the full schedule)
We will host several sessions via zoom to provide information about the I-Corps offering and to facilitate forming teams. You can attend even if you do not have an idea or a team. In addition, take some time to read this article about the fall session and the previous teams.
You can access here the list of teams looking for members and individuals looking for teams. You need to apply to get your information on this list.
To attend an info session, register here. All sessions are 12 to 1 pm.
The Penn I-Corps course will help you:
Each I-Corps course takes place over four weeks, and includes 4-6 in-person or webinar sessions, combined with ~8 hours of customer discovery by each team. Courses are free to attend, and you do not require current/prior NSF funding to participate. You can choose between the Fall or Spring cohorts.
Open to the Penn community: faculty, students, post-docs, staff, and alumni who graduated in the past year. Teams ideas need to be authored by Penn individuals.
The key requirements are:
Applicants should have:
I have an idea for a startup, but do not have partners to form a team.
Perfect! Apply and we’ll partner you with faculty and other students.
I want to get involved with a startup, but I do not have my own idea.
Great! We love your entrepreneurial spirit. Apply and we’ll try to pair you with a team who has an idea.
I am a faculty member looking to have a team formed.
You’re welcome too! Based on your background and experience, we’ll pair you with a team that can leverage your skills. Contact us directly.
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis for either the fall or spring short-course. We help you de-risk your idea to move it forward quickly and find answers to:
Completing a Short Course puts your team in an excellent position to apply to the national NSF Teams program — where you’ll have $50,000 in support to conduct customer discovery. Other benefits include:
Winner of the 2020 President’s Innovation Prize
Questions: contact Tomas Isakowitz firstname.lastname@example.org
The Penn I-Corps Site is an NSF program designed to facilitate commercialization of university research. The accelerator is a joint collaboration between the Penn Center for Innovation (PCI), Penn Law’s Detkin IP and Technology Clinic, the City of Philadelphia, Ben Franklin Technology Partners of SE PA, Wharton Entrepreneurship, and Penn Medicine Center for Health Care Innovation. It was established in 2015.
Penn I-Corps is supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number 1450467
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number 1450467.
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.