UCF’s New Program for Innovators & Entrepreneurs

The UCF Venture LaunchTM  is a program sponsored by The Tech Transfer Office and Orange County Government. This FREE startup program is for current UCF graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, faculty, researchers, and staff, who are interested in learning about entrepreneurship.

For further information, please call 407-754-5526 or email Kelli Murray, Program Chair of UCF Venture Launch, or Svetlana Shtrom, Director of Technology Transfer.

The goal of UCF’s Venture Launch is to foster foundational growth and connections of tech and tech-enabled pre and early-stage companies to move UCF innovations into the market for public and community benefit. We do this by offering specialized learning, resources, and support that help to transform promising research results into early-stage ventures positioned for growth and success. Our resources include educational workshops, coaching, and connections to seasoned entrepreneurs, mentors, and potential partners/investors.

Complimentary 1:1 Coaching Sessions are available and encouraged:

Scroll down for upcoming sessions and registration info!

2021 Program Schedule

Date and Time Learning Phase Session Description

11am – 1pm

3pm – 5pm

Support & Resources 1:1 Coaching Meet one-on-one with innovation and startup coach, Kelli Murray. During these sessions, you’ll have the floor to discuss all things entrepreneurial. Whether you have a question about getting started, finding your value proposition, making connections, brainstorming on strategy, or practicing your pitch, you have your own resident coach for that and more.

12pm to 1pm
Intro Welcome to the UCF Venture Launch Program You play a key role in helping intellectual innovations scale to new heights. This session will share information about a new resource now available for UCF doctoral, post-doctoral, faculty and staff innovators and researchers. Secure your seat to learn more about how to lift your idea, intellectual property, or start-up!

4pm to 4:45pm
Inspiration Founder’s Tips Talk with: CytoSen End the week with a Founder meet-and-greet with Dr. Rob Igarashi and Dr. Alicja Copik. Engage with founders who have walked the path of entrepreneurship. This is the first of a series of 45-minute inspirational “pop-up” talks with diverse industry innovators about tips and lessons learned along their journey.

12pm – 1:30pm
Preparation: Networking Get Connected (Session 1 of 2)
Intro to UCF’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem & Resources
UCF offers an array of support for innovators and entrepreneurs looking to pursue a commercialization path for their inventions. This session will go into a deeper layer of detail across the continuum of entrepreneurial and business resources available at UCF and its affiliate partners.

12pm – 1pm
Preparation: Validation Bootcamp: Landing Your MVP (minimum viable product) This session will cover the “cliff notes” version overview of Lean Startup methodology and Business Model Canvas tools and will describe defining a minimum viable product, business opportunity validation, and business model refinement through contextual stories. Resource links for free and paid online resources (templates, books, and subject matter partners) will also be shared as a takeaway.
4pm to 4:45pm
Inspiration Founder’s Tips Talk with: Hoverfly Technologies End the week with a Founder meet-and-greet with Dr. Al Ducharme, CEO and Founder of Hoverfly Technologies. Al is unique in that his former academic role at UCF ultimately led to his transition towards entrepreneurship. This casual chat will give you the inside scoop on what he’s learned along his journey.

12pm – 1pm
Launch & Build: Formation Company Formation LLC, S-Corp, C-Corp, B-Corp…With so many options and implications, how do you choose the best type of company to form? Which formation is the best place to start for a new entity? In this session, we’ll also cover some blocking and tackling of what you need to know about Operating Agreements and Cap Tables.

12pm – 1pm
Preparation: Validation Protecting Your Intellectual Assets In this session, we’ll cover knowing if your invention or research is protect-able, various forms of intellectual property protection; effective strategies for protecting your intellectual capital, property, trademark, or copyright; and how these various protections may influence your company’s structure and operating agreements

12pm – 1pm
Launch & Build: Brand Establishing Your Brand and Social Presence Whether you’re a legal entity or not, having an online presence and brand means that you’re on the startup field. In this session you’ll learn the importance of setting up an identity for your venture as well as tactical methods for creating your corporate message and presence.

4pm to 4:45pm
Inspiration Founder’s Tips Talk with: NanoPhotonica End the week with a Founder meet-and-greet with Dr. Chris Morton, CEO & Founder of NanoPhotonica. During this session, you’ll engage with a founder who has walked the path of entrepreneurship for over 30 years. The 45-minute talk will be full of tips and insights gained along his entrepreneurial journey.

Weds, 8/11/2021
12pm – 1pm
Raising Funds: Grants Grant Funding for Startups (SBIR/STTR) Understand how the SBIR (Small Business Innovative Research) and STTR (Small Business Technology Transfer) programs provide sources of R&D funding between the initial idea development and proof of market potential. Covers eligibility requirements, participating agencies, the differences between SBIR and STTR, and more.

Fri, 8/13/2021
4pm to 4:45pm
Inspiration Founder’s Tips Talk with: Helicon Chemicals
Commercializing rocket fuel is no easy endeavor. End the week with a Founder meet-and-greet with President & CEO, David Reid, who is walking the path of entrepreneurship. This 45-minute casual chat will allow you to learn how this fellow UCF Alumni, materials engineer, and tech-licensee has navigated the entrepreneurial journey and tips to launch your own.

12pm – 1pm
Raising Funds: Equity Slicing the Pie of Startup Equity Like fundraising, splitting equity and relinquishing control is hard to do. In this session, you’ll learn from a seasoned entrepreneur who has exited a tech company and leaned on a model called “Slicing Pie.” It’s a formula for funding your company without funds in a way that is objective and based on market value of contributions towards advancing the company towards a financing event.
12pm – 1pm
Launch & Build: Networking Get Connected (Session 2 of 2)
Community-based Startup Resources
When you’re in build mode, knowing who to connect with and who can help can be a daunting and time-consuming task. Whether you’re looking for additional knowledge, market data, building a team, seeking funding, or wanting to get networked, this workshop will help you understand the variety and depth of support available within the Central Florida and State entrepreneurial ecosystem.
12pm – 1:00pm
Preparation: Formation Transformational Leadership This session with Dr. Ron Piccolo will cover transformational leadership and job behaviors, including organizational citizenship behavior, communication, motivation, and goal commitment
4pm to 4:45pm
Inspiration Founder’s Tips Talk with: LUMINAR End the week with a Founder meet-and-greet. During these sessions, you’ll engage with founders who have walked the path of entrepreneurship. The 45-minute inspirational “pop-up” talks are with diverse industry innovators about lessons learned along their entrepreneurial journey.
1:1 Coaching Raising Funds: Pitch Decks Hitting a Home-run with Your Pitch Deck What separates an average pitch deck into one that compels people into action? Whether your seeking a grant, recruiting team members, talking to investors, or simply networking, a well-refined pitch deck will make you and your company worth paying attention to. In this session, you’ll learn how to translate your invention into a compelling story and vision that everyday people will understand. Resource links for free and paid online resources (templates, books, and subject matter partners) will also be shared as a takeaway.
1:1 Coaching Raising Funds: Value Proposition Finding Your Value Proposition As a patent holder, company founder and/or business owner, knowing your value proposition is critical for so many functions including customer acquisition, marketing and branding, fund raising, and your vision for the future. In this session, you’ll learn how to answer questions such as: What are my customer’s jobs? What pains does my invention and/or company solve, for who, and what gains are achieved?
1:1 Coaching Launch & Build: Licensing Exclusive or Non-Exclusive: Understanding the best License for your Invention With the question of licensing exclusivity, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Each business looking at your IP must determine whether an exclusive licensing agreement is worth paying a premium price for, or if it’s sufficient to obtain guarantees of limited competition within a specific geographic area or industry often at a lower price tag. In this session, you’ll learn the difference between licensing types and various deal structures.
1:1 Coaching Preparation: Formation Archetypes of Entrepreneurship What type of entrepreneur are you? Understand the type of entrepreneur you are (or want to be) and the variations between academic entrepreneurs, social-benefit entrepreneurs, lifestyle business owners, startup entrepreneurs, growth entrepreneurs, silent partners, and more. Determining the type of entrepreneur you want to be will guide the path of your invention, co-founders, team, company structure, work/life balance, fundraising needs, time to market, and more.


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