While graduate students and postdocs will be encouraged to participate in all sandbox activities, we will also develop a mentorship program aimed at these mature and highly technically qualified individuals.
Past experience has shown that the demands of lab and course work in the sciences largely preclude MSc and PhD students from founding companies during their degrees, yet many graduate trainees are unlikely to find traditional academic jobs—and many are eager to explore opportunities in startups or larger companies post-graduation, as well as differentiating themselves among an increasingly competitive peer group of graduate trainees. Likewise, postdoctoral fellows are committed to lab work and scientific writing, yet face an equally uncertain future in academia.
The SURGE Fellows program is designed to provide graduate students and postdocs with experiential learning in innovation and entrepreneurship by having them mentor teams and provide supports as paid teaching assistants in the SCIE 4701/02 innovation course. “Boot camp” training will be provided prior to the start of the class.