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The Inventors Program empowers you and a team of fellow STEM undergraduates to turn scientific discovery into societal impact.

Spring 2021 Practicum Courses are listed as Hybrid or Blended. We are offering courses so that you can participate fully online *OR* in-person.

Are you wondering if you should become an Inventor? Please watch this video HERE from some of our past students explaining how they became Inventors! Spoiler Alert: You would make a great Inventor : )

If you'd like to learn more about how to get connected, please take a look at our 16 minute recorded Spring 2021 Inventors Info Session HERE or join us on Wednesdays from 3:30-4pm CST on Zoom HERE to ask questions and meet an Inventors Program leader!

Spring Courses

STEM Military Innovation with Hacking for Defense (DoD)
NSC 325 47785 TTH 3:30-5pm
Collaborate with defense researchers to design products for military & civilian use!

Instructors & Mentorship:
Co-taught by Professor Trent Thurman Director of the McCombs Master of Science in Technology Commercialization Program (MSTC), and Professor Michael Peterson of McCombs. Collaborate with mentors from the 75th Innovation Command and project sponsors from across defense research units!

Spring2021 H4 D Mentors

Project Topics:
Read project statements HERE (google folder) which range from road safety systems, to health informatics, to water accessibility. Watch teams from last Spring present HERE (website).

Student Story Highlights:
Obinna Akahara (left photo) was part of the "Supersight" team. His team won a Inventors Showcase award in Spring 2019, presented at the DisrupTexas competition, and even got to ride along with the Austin Fire Department! Alyssa Cruz and Zaina Bathily (right photo) received a summer fellowship to continue developing their rapid blood filtration product for emergency blood transfusions.

H4 D Student Highlights

Additional Credit Bonus:
In addition to the entrepreneurship minor, some BDPs, and independent inquiry flag, relevant projects may count for Elements of Computing Certificate w/Elements advisor approval

***We have a lot of room in the military innovation course and it's going to be so great! Please consider joining if you'd like to immerse yourself in a new field with local experts at UT and in defense research organizations across the nation! There are many funding resources available for nascent products with military and civilian use cases that we can connect you to after the semester

Bianca Website

STEM for National Security with the CIA
47780 TTH 2-3:30pm
Partner with intelligence experts to create solutions to policy in practice for emerging technology questions!

Instructors & Mentorship:
Taught by Dr. Bianca Adair, member of the CIA and the Resident Intelligence Officer at the LBJ School of Public Affairs. Supported by mentors from the CIA, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

Project Topics:
Project challenge statements range from space frontier exploration to nuclear power generation, quantum computing, and more. Watch teams from last Spring present HERE (website).

Kush Website

Student Story Highlight:
Kush Patel applied for and received an internship at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence following his Inventors Practicum experience. His team also won the audience choice award (cash prize!) at last Spring Inventors Program Showcase!

Additional Credit Bonus:
In addition to the entrepreneurship minor, some BDPs, and the independent inquiry flag, this particular course can count towards the Security Studies Certificate

Cybersecurity with Trend Micro
47775 TTH 12:30-2pm
Develop digital cybersecurity solutions with Trend Micro! Some coding experience helpful!

Instructors & Mentorship:
Taught by Professor Chris Prosise and mentored by engineers from Trend Micro, a global cybersecurity company with a tech office in Austin!

Chris Website

Project Topics:
Project topics range from cloud services, to medical device security, to IoT networking. Watch teams from last Spring present HERE (website). ***Some coding experience helpful for this course***

Student Story Highlights:
Ivonne Martinez (left photo) received an internship at Trend Micro the summer following her Inventors Practicum experience. Her team also won a local hackathon during the semester with their project idea! Tejas Saboo (right photo) also received an internship at Trend Micro the summer following his Inventors Practicum experience and did some incredible R&D!

TM Student Highlights

Additional Credit Bonus:

In addition to the entrepreneurship minor, some BDPs, and the independent inquiry flag, this particular course can count towards the Elements of Computing Certificate and can be petitioned for UD C S credit for C S majors with C S advisor approval.

General Information about the Inventors Program

Innovate in your time in the College of Natural Sciences or Cockrell School of Engineering.

  • Connect with real-world research in the community, and learn the process of taking a product to market.
    From interacting with potential customers or users, to partnering with industry leads, to building skills and gaining experiences valuable for your future, this is a chance to be at the table from the first stages of development through implementation.
  • Engage in an all-day problem-solving session.
    Inventors Sprints
    are one-day events where student teams come together to solve a problem presented by a partner from the real world. Sprints give you a great chance to gain professional development experience and build your resumes. You get to make connections with faculty and industry sponsors — a great way to jumpstart a new research or internship opportunity or meet a potential employer!
  • Get course credit in the one-of-a-kind practicum class.
    You'll learn the process of taking a product to market in a number of ways: by talking with stakeholders, prototyping products, conducting experiments and developing a marketing plan. These courses qualify for UT's entrepreneurship minor, some BDPs, some degree-bearing credit, and the Independent Inquiry flag!
Three smiling students working together on computers

Students collaborate with fellow problem-solving peers.

  • Develop a team to work together around a great idea.
    This is an immersive experience, and it happens in community with other students, mentors and community or industry stakeholders. You'll learn entrepreneurialism and to apply scientific thinking to understanding important customer and commercialization concepts.

    Learn all about intellectual property and the Inventors Program »

Getting Started as a Student

The recommended path to join the Inventors Program is to register for the Inventors Program Practicum Course. This program satisfies some of the requirements for an entrepreneurship minor. We also encourage you to participate in a day-long Inventors Sprint.

First-generation and underrepresented students are strongly encouraged to participate.

After the first year, the Inventors Program supports you so you can:

  • continue working with your team on the product or service you developed
  • pursue other course credit and competitive fellowships
  • complete your entrepreneurship minor
  • complete an industry internship
  • engage with startup resources at UT and in Austin

Contact us with your questions at