iCorps short course in Burlington

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.

Contact Us

Nick Grimley, Director of Entrepreneurship & Tech Commercialization  

One National Life Drive
Deane C. Davis Building, 6th Floor
Montpelier, VT 05620-0501


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