Boot Camp for Science Entrepreneurs

Students in a lecture hall

Welcome to our boot camp: The Business of Science

Thank you for your interest in the Business of Science Bootcamp. Enrollment for the 2022 bootcamp is now full.

In Person Bootcamp: June 12 to 16, 2022 

Virtual Orientation: June 5, 1-3 PM

Have a discovery mindset? Considering nontraditional career options in the life sciences?  The “Business of Science” boot camp is a career opportunity for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in the life sciences to obtain value added training in Entrepreneurship and Regulatory Affairs. This year, we will have a special focus on SBIR funding from NIH. Our unique, one-week boot camp experience will expand your business acumen and impact your career trajectory in preparation for emerging careers in science and biotechnology. We have assembled experts from both within and beyond Penn State, and look forward to an exciting week of didactic and experiential learning. See an idea come to life and learn the basics of marketing, business planning, and intellectual property. Learn from local faculty entrepreneurs, and get ready to make your own pitch before our very own panel of experts and judges. We are planning a combination of in-person and Zoom sessions (locations TBD). We will follow all COVID-19 guidelines and prioritize safety following all PSU guidelines.

Please note that there is no fee for attending this boot camp, so your commitment to the entire week is required; otherwise, we will need to charge your home department. Registration is required, and limited to 25 participants on a first-come basis. Acceptance is conditional until approved by advisor. Please contact Donna Korzick ( or Jean Pierce ( with any immediate questions. There will be a required virtual orientation on June 5, from 1-3 PM.

We hope to provide breakfast and lunch each day. Sessions will kick off on Sunday, June 12 (1 to 4 pm). Sessions will continue on June 13 – 16 from ~8:30 to 4:30 pm each day, with the exception of Thursday June 16, when we will conclude the boot camp at about 1 pm. Student teams will develop an idea throughout the week, and the best idea pitch will be rewarded with fun prizes. Classes will consist of lectures, case studies, and breakout sessions, and supplemented with panel discussions and video presentations by entrepreneurs so students get to see ideas in action. The Business of Science Boot Camp is part of our the NIGMS Predoctoral Training Program “Physiological Adaptations to Stress."

Faculty who will be involved include:

  • Jeanette Miller, Director, Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIENT) major, Smeal College of Business; Associate Director, Farrell Center for Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship; Assistant Clinical Professor of Entrepreneurship
  • James Delattre, Director, Penn State Office of Entrepreneurship & Commercialization
  • Ann Hoag, Director, Intercollege Minor in Entrepreneurship & Innovation (ENTI)
  • Vivian Etter, Penn State Law Staff Attorney, LaunchBox Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic
  • Maureen Mulvihill, President, CEO and Co Founder, Actuated Medical, Inc
  • Michael Zaydon, Penn State Smeal College of Business
  • Rachel Herder, Vice President of Intellectual Property and Associate General Counsel, Mammoth Biosciences
  • Ben Lawrence, Vice President, KCF Technologies
  • Steve Carpenter, Elizabeth Hayes and Dan Lenz, Penn State Smeal College of Business
  • PSU Faculty Entrepreneurs: Jim Adair, Josh Lambert, Scott Lindner, and Troy Ott
Sunday, June 5Sunday, June 12Monday, June 13Tuesday, June 14Wednesday, June 15Thursday, June 16
8:30 – 9:30am
ICOR Partnerships – Opportunities for Innovation
James Delattre, Director Office of Entrepreneurship & Commercialization

SBIR Funding – Where to Start?
Maureen Mulvihill, President, CEO and Co-Founder, Actuated Medical, Inc
8:30 – 10:15am Legal Structures for Running a Business Vivian Etter Penn State Law LaunchBox Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic

10:30-12:00pm Intellectual Property and Regulations Rachel Herder (virtual)
8:30 – 10:15am Financing your New Venture External Funding Steve Carpenter

10:30am -12:00pm Panel of Entrepreneurs Scott Lindner
Troy Ott
Josh Lambert
Jim Adair
8:30 – 9:30am Group Final Pitch Practice

10:00am – 12:00pm Presentations of Business Ideas to Judges (8 min presentation/8 min discussion)
Jeanette Miller Steve Carpenter Elizabeth Hayes Dave Lenze
1:00-3:00pm Virtual Orientation
Dr’s Korzick and Miller
A. Outline of Bootcamp
B. Introduction of students & Lead faculty
C. Areas of Interest/Research
D. Forming teams
1:00 – 4:00pm Entrepreneurial Ideation Jeanette Miller
A. Identification of gaps, niches and pain points
B. Defining customer needs
C. Value propositions

Business Model Development

A. Business Model Canvas
B. Competitor Analysis
1:00 – 2:00pm Diffusion of Innovation: Crossing the Chasm
Ann Hoag, ENTI Director

1:00 – 2:00pm Customer Discovery
Getting in Front of Customers
Jeanette Miller

Customer Development: Selling your product
Ben Lawrence KCF Technologies
12:30 – 4:30pm Financial statements, valuation
Michael Zaydon Penn State, Smeal College of Business
12:30 – 2:00pm Effective Pitch Development Jeanette Miller

2:00-4:30pm Group Breakout Time