MELBOURNE, FLA.—The Florida Institute of Technology Nathan M. Bisk College of Business has launched a Master of Science in Innovation & Entrepreneurship degree. The one-year program appeals to students or working adults with a business idea, engineers and other business professionals developing an idea for their companies and engineering managers charged with accelerating new product commercialization.
The program will train individuals and companies with a product or service idea to use “Lean Launchpad” techniques to commercialize their ideas over the course of a year. Key courses include Survey of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Introduction to New Product Development and two courses on technology commercialization. Courses on entrepreneurial finance, project engineering, quality engineering and intellectual property will round out the curriculum.
The program takes a skills-based approach based on a survey of many successful entrepreneurs and corporate executives to ascertain the specific skills viewed as essential for success. Ideation, negotiation and raising capital from investors are considered key. Students will learn and use the latest methodologies in product life-cycle management and rapid new product development; they will practice raising capital by pitching their business concepts to panels of experienced angel investors.
“Fortune 500 companies pay millions of dollars to deploy these methodologies because of the tremendous financial and competitive benefits. We will use the same technology commercialization techniques that Toyota and Nissan have used to cut their new car development time from three years to one year,” said Henry Perez, Nathan M. Bisk College of Business faculty member and program director. Boeing, Cummins and Honda are also leading practitioners of these advanced methodologies.
“We are equally interested in the launch and the harvest,” said dean of the college Annie Becker. “We were pleased to see Apple buy our hometown company AuthenTec for $356 million last July. Local Fortune 500 company, Harris, which spun off AuthenTec, is a hotbed of technological innovation and AuthenTec CEO Larry Ciaccia got his MBA at Florida Tech. To honor this Melbourne entrepreneurial tradition, we are making attractive scholarships available.”
An “Instant Decision Day” has been scheduled April 30, 2-8 p.m. at the Homewood Suites-UCF, 3028 N. Alafaya Trail, Orlando.