The Venture Innovation Program (VIP) is a collaboration between QB3, UCSF, and the Haas School of Business to engage in life science entrepreneurial initiatives. The program offers a platform for entrepreneurs who are helped by its Fellows to connect with investors and other stakeholders. VIP also hosts events that feature the newest ideas and brings together people who are interested in the latest in life sciences in the Bay Area.
VIP replicates the environment of an early-stage life science company. Each teams efforts are focused on creating pathways to transition innovations from the research or academic project stage to the first phase of commercialization. Teams are exposed to various aspects of venture creation and venture management. Depending on the stage and the needs of the project, team members may be involved in strategic and operational activities such as identifying unmet clinical needs, assessing market potential, generating concepts, prototyping, running pre-clinical studies, elaborating strategies such as patent, regulatory (FDA), reimbursement and clinical strategies, developing business or research plans, and fundraising. In general, teams will work towards reaching the first round of institutional funding through VIPs network of partnerships and affiliations.
Team mentors include top-tier venture capitalists (see Venture Advisory Board section), in addition to Clinical, Engineering and Business faculty from UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco. Like the Board of Directors of a startup, the mentors provide the project teams with guidance, support and access to resources. VIP teams meet regularly with their mentors to receive feedback ensuring that their innovation development pathway is proceeding toward achievement of commercial success.
Graduate students, researchers and faculty from the schools of Business, Engineering, Sciences, and Medicine at UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco are encouraged to apply. Candidates may choose to enroll their own projects or to join existing VIP projects. Affiliates of UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco who are working on life sciences-oriented projects and who aspire to take their project to market are encouraged to apply. All life sciences-oriented projects qualify, at any stage of development.
VIP runs continuously and is not constrained to the academic schedule. Individuals and teams are welcome to apply to VIP at any time.