A trans-institutional experience

This course offers MBA students a unique opportunity to gain real-world experience as part of an entrepreneurial team. MBAs, EMBAs, JDs, and PhDs work in teams to examine the potential for commercializing technologies being developed in Vanderbilt labs.

Teams are led by Vanderbilt Business, Engineering, and Law faculty, as well as industry and legal mentors. The course considers issues like identification of entrepreneurial opportunities, protecting intellectual property, product definition, competitive analysis, and regulatory and marketing strategy.

What Students Say About the Course

“Innovation Realization was the highlight of my education at Owen. We learned not only how to commercialize a nascent idea, but also how to work with individuals from different educational backgrounds with varying motivations. Our lectures were filled with experts in their respective fields and those gifts of knowledge were immediately reinforced in the work we did with our teams. Today, I still rely on the foundation laid in this class and the lessons learned in the classroom.”

Jessica Osaki (EMBA'17)

"As a law student, we are bombarded with theory, but [this course] was a wildly valuable, year-long simulation in the convergence of law, business, and technology. We learned to work across legal, business, and technical issues as we will in the real economy. The best lawyers create value for their clients, and this course taught us how we can leverage intellectual property to support start-up and high growth companies in their broader endeavors."

Brian Mache 

Past Projects

Virtuoso Surgical

Team members from the original class, including Richard Hendrick (PhD '17), created a hand-held robotic surgery system.

Read more

SkyNano Technologies

After taking the course, Anna Douglas (PhD'18) co-founded a company to improve the manufacture of high-value carbon nanotubes. Anna was included on Forbes 2019 30 under 30: Energy.

Read more