Student Programs

The Innovation & Entrepreneurship Program (IEP) offers courses as well as complementary programming, such as the Cheng Wu Innovation Challenge and the SICE Cross Campus Certificate in Entrepreneurship, which facilitate students applying their technical skills to address real-world problems and build solutions that can be developed into viable products and businesses.

The Cheng Wu Innovation Challenge affords students the opportunity to showcase their innovative thinking while competing for funding to support the further development of their technological innovation. The SICE Cross Campus Certificate in Entrepreneurship, meanwhile, empowers SICE students to demonstrate that they are actively engaged in entrepreneurial thinking through their coursework.

Beyond the learning provided through the courses offered in the IEP, the school continues to develop opportunities for students to engage in experiential learning outside of the classroom. The Velocity Conference gives SICE graduate students the opportunity to travel to Silicon Valley to learn first-hand what it takes to become a successful entrepreneur, and the Venture Fellowship provides a student startup team mentorship, a scholarship, and dedicated workspace to commit a year to the development of their business.

Cheng Wu Innovation Challenge

The Cheng Wu Innovation Challenge supports students who are learning to develop technological innovations unconstrained by any immediate consideration of their commercial potential. These may be new applications of existing technologies or the creation and/or use of new technologies. The goal of the competition is to encourage university-level intellectual property generation.

Although the competition is open to students from any discipline as well as technological innovations developed in any course, each team must have at least one student completing a major or a minor within the School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering.

Judging Criteria

  • Novel: Did the team convince you that the technological innovation conceptualized is unique relative to existing solutions?
  • Nonobvious: Did you find the team’s technological innovation to be unapparent?
  • Technological Feasibility: Did the team convincingly demonstrate that its technological innovation can be implemented and that it has an understanding of the technologies required?
  • User-centered: Did the team demonstrate that it had validated its understanding of the target end user of the technological innovation?
  • Implementable: Did the team demonstrate a clear development plan for ensuring that the technological innovation addresses the problem identified as well as how funds received through the competition will be put to effective use?


A total of $15,000 will be awarded, typically $10,000 to the first-place team and $5,000 to the second-place team, but judges will have the discretion to award the funds based on the quality of the technological innovations presented.


  • November 26, 4-5.p.m: Information Session, Shoemaker Innovation Center (Luddy Hall 2150)
  • January 11, 4-5 p.m.: Information Session, Shoemaker Innovation Center (Luddy Hall 2150)
  • February 1, 5 p.m.: Applications Due
  • February 15, 5 p.m.: Finalists Notified
  • April 5, 5 p.m.: Finalist Slides Due (trabrown@indiana.edu)
  • April 12, 2-5 p.m.: Final Presentations and Winner Selection, Dorsey Learning Hall


  • Each team member must be enrolled full-time at Indiana University Bloomington.
  • Each team must include at least one student completing a major or a minor within SICE.
  • All intellectual property submitted for the purpose of the competition must belong to the students who are submitting it.
  • By participating in this competition, students agree to receive the funding through their IU Bursar account and use the funding received to support the further development of the technological innovation presented in the competition.

Application Requirements

You may complete and submit your application online. Submit the following information (include visuals as necessary to effectively convey your concept):

  • Student Information
  • Technological Innovation Title
  • Short Description of Technological Innovation
  • Long Description of Technological Innovation
  • Explanation of Problem
  • Explanation of Solution
  • Detailed Discussion of Technology Involved
  • Current Stage of Development (Including Team Roles)
  • Plan for Further Development to Address Problem
  • Specific Use of Funds

If you have any questions regarding the Cheng Wu Innovation Challenge, contact Dr. Brown at trabrown@indiana.edu.

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Cross Campus Certificate in Entrepreneurship

The need for students to understand entrepreneurship is increasing, regardless of their selected field of study. Many students find careers in which they work for themselves, so basic business and entrepreneurial principles and skills become invaluable. The Cross Campus Certificate in Entrepreneurship consists of 15 credit hours offered through a program partnership between the School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering and the Kelley School of Business. Only undergraduate students completing a major or minor in SICE will be admitted into the SICE Certificate in Entrepreneurship program.

The program consists of four courses from the Kelley School of Business (W212 Exploring Entrepreneurship, W232 Venture Ideas, W233 Venture Models, and W300 New Venture Management) and two innovation and entrepreneurship courses from SICE (I436 Technology Innovation and I438 Technology Entrepreneurship). An overall certificate GPA of 2.5 is required in addition to a minimum grade of a C in all of the certificate courses.

If you have any questions regarding the SICE Cross Campus Certificate in Entrepreneurship, contact Dr. Brown at trabrown@indiana.edu.

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Velocity Conference

The Velocity Conference is an annual event which affords a select group of graduate students the opportunity to interact with technology entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley.

The event is open to all SICE graduate students interested in entrepreneurship. Donors cover the cost of food, hotel, and logistics; students provide their own ground and air transportation for this highly educational experience.

Founded by Jack M. Gill, Ph.D., the Velocity Conference is organized by Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business for the purpose of accelerating entrepreneurial careers. Each year, roughly 50 IU graduate students from the Kelley School of Business, College of Arts + Sciences, and the School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering travel to Silicon Valley and are hosted by UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business. The program includes startup stories presented in a classroom and a full day spent touring selected startups, incubators, and VC firms around the Valley.

The conference underscores the significance of entrepreneurship, technology, and innovation in the contemporary business environment. At the conference, students have the opportunity to network and visit diverse geographic hotbeds of entrepreneurial activity, including hearing the business and personal stories behind each entrepreneur through presentations and informal chats.

If you have any questions regarding the Velocity Conference, contact Dr. Brown at trabrown@indiana.edu.

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Venture Fellowship

Gifts from SproutBox and Ice Miller LLP provide up to a $10,000 scholarship for one student startup business that can demonstrate a commitment to driving their business forward, whether through success already achieved or its business plans. The business can be an individual or a team, with the scholarship being divided evenly between the members. The team is initially given a $5,000 scholarship and workspace in the Shoemaker Innovation Center to develop their venture during the summer term with the goal being to reach milestones established at the beginning of the program. If the mentors are satisfied with the team's progress by the end of the summer, the team will be awarded an additional $2,500 scholarship as they continue developing their business during the fall semester. Achieving another set of objectives would allow the team to renew their $2,500 scholarship as they further develop their business during the spring semester.

All teams are mentored by Dr. Brown; Brad Wisler, founder and CEO of Periodic and co-founder of SproutBox; and Dustin DuBois, partner at Ice Miller, weekly to develop their business/product.

For your application, create a two-minute video describing (1) your idea, (2) your team, and (3) your passion/inspiration for your concept, in addition to completing the online application. Submit the team members' resumes as well as the link to your video to Dr. Brown by Friday, March 1 at 5 p.m. EST.

If you have any questions regarding the Venture Fellowship, contact Dr. Brown at trabrown@indiana.edu.

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