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First Master of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program in UC System Starts in Fall at UCI

Resource Rising Tide Rising Tide - Sep '19
September 17, 2019 By Jackie Connor

The 9-month curriculum has recently gained popularity at UCI as applications pour in for fall quarter.

As of fall of 2019, UC Irvine (UCI) once again sets its sights toward the future as it now offers the first Master of Innovation and Entrepreneurship degree in the UC system.

Through UCI’s Paul Merage School of Business, the nine-month program provides students with both academic and real-world experience in entrepreneurship as well as a host of resources within the UC system and Orange County community.

“Based on the number and quality of applications and the high acceptance rate of our offers, there clearly is a lot of interest in this program,” said Chris Bauman, Paul Merage faculty director of the Masters of Innovation and Entrepreneurship program. “We see this as an opportunity for the Merage school to partner with a new part of the business community. We see the entrepreneurial space being a vital part of the economy, and full of opportunities to work on exciting and important ideas.”

The Master of Innovation and Entrepreneurship offers extensive integrated and immersive academic and practical experience for students looking to embark on careers as innovators, whether they choose to start their own company, work for a startup or develop an innovative idea or project within an established company.

The program features classes in both an academic and non-academic setting that focus on identifying new venture opportunities through lean startup methodology, developing a business model, preparing a business plan, crafting a pitch, assembling a team, raising the necessary finances – including venture capital – and launching a new business.

Richard Sudek, UCI Beall Applied Innovation executive director and UCI chief innovation officer will be teaching a key course on entrepreneurship during the winter quarter as part of the program’s curriculum. In his course, Sudek will focus on an overview of starting a company and challenges that entrepreneurs will face, like attracting funding, building a team and selecting partners.

“I have taught entrepreneurship in other business schools, however, I’m most excited about this program because the faculty and courses are being coordinated,” said Sudek. “And that rarely happens to the degree that it is here.”

Students will also be encouraged to attend regular events and workshops hosted at the Cove @ UCI Beall Applied Innovation, such as investor screenings, pitch events, Wayfinder showcases and multiple entrepreneur speaker series. They will have access to local, regional and statewide entrepreneurial communities as well as the opportunity to attend off-site trips to Silicon Valley, San Diego and Los Angeles.

“This masters is applied and designed to have students constantly interacting with entrepreneurs and investors,” said Sudek. “This is not simply a series of lectures or classes. This is really exposing the entrepreneurs to what it’s like to really start a business; it’s well beyond theory.”

For more information about the Master of Innovation and Entrepreneurship degree program, visit merage.uci.edu/programs.

*Main photo: Richard Sudek, UCI Beall Applied Innovation executive director and UCI chief innovation officer, teaches entrepreneurs a key course for the Master of Innovation and Entrepreneurship degree program at the Cove @ UCI.
Photo by: Rthura Cevallos

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