The Skandalaris Center for Interdisciplinary Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Washington University in St. Louis has announced a unique partnership with Boeing’s Phantom Works Ventures, an entrepreneurial arm of the national corporation. Students will have the opportunity to commercialize Boeing patents in non-aerospace applications – with total prizes of $5,000.
Information sessions are scheduled for Aug. 27, Aug. 28 and Aug. 31 for interested undergraduate, graduate and professional students. On Sept. 2, a “speed-dating” event will be held to facilitate team formation, with the goal of having interdisciplinary teams formed by Friday, Sept. 4. Dates, times and locations of all events are available on the Skandalaris Center event page.
The challenge has two phases. Interdisciplinary teams will form with the requirement that teams must include students from at least three of Washington University’s seven schools. Teams may enter the challenge fully-formed, or students can attend Skandalaris events to get connected with students from different schools.
In phase 2, the teams will build a new venture concept around the patents with the assistance of Skandalaris Center and Phantom Works Ventures coaching. University faculty members can participate as advisers, but are not eligible for funding awards. Final judging and best-plan awards will take place Dec. 7 in the @4240 building in the Cortex innovation district.
Once the team is formed, members will work together in the first phase — which ends Sept. 25 — to translate the technical jargon of patent or patents into plain English and rich media. Fifty Boeing patent categories have been selected for highest commercialization potential.
“This partnership is a perfect fit for the Skandalaris Center,” said Emre Toker, managing director of the center. “We are thankful to Boeing for its support of our mission to promote interdisciplinary collaboration and training. Boeing has been named a top-100 Global Innovator and has been granted over 14,000 patents worldwide. This is a great opportunity for our students to get connected to Boeing and its team at the Cortex Innovation Center.”
“We are excited to partner with Washington University for this challenge, and to mentor students throughout the semester,” said Barry Martin, program management, Phantom Works Ventures and challenge lead for Boeing.
More information about the challenge is available at skandalaris.wustl.edu/boeing-challenge/.