Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Graphic of OCTRI's innovation programming and how it is related to each other. See pdf in first paragraph of this page for details.

OCTRI strives to cultivate innovation in research.  Whether you have a burgeoning idea or a proof of concept that is ready for design, OCTRI has education opportunities to meet your needs.  Download a flyer that summarizes our programming or read more below.

Annual programming

OCTRI offers several innovation and entrepreneurship programs on an annual basis. Review these options below and check back regularly for updates on upcoming opportunities.

I-Corps @ NCATS

This 6-week I-Corps short course provides biomedical scientists, clinician scientists, and engineers with a new approach to accelerate the translation of discoveries from lab to clinical practice. Based on the National Science Foundation's Innovation Corps (I-CorpsTM) program, the premiere federally-funded innovation and commercialization training in the U.S., BIP Corp is an evidence-based experience that will take you out of your comfort zone to connect with potential customers and provide you with a competitive business case for future funding, partnership and translational science opportunities. 
BIP Corp fact sheet and course details

2023 course schedule
      Sept 20 - Oct 25 (Virtual)
      Wednesdays, 9 a.m. - 11 a.m.

Contact Melissa Mudd for more information:

This course is  offered  in partnership between OCTRI, OHSU offices of Collaborations and Entrepreneurship and Technology Transfer, and the I-Corps@NCATS consortium led by University of Alabama at Birmingham (UL1TR003096). 

The OHSU Student Innovator Challenge is a student pitch competition, intended for student-led concepts or technologies. Students will come away with the skills and resources to:

  • Develop an effective pitch for a broad audience 
  • Understand the basics of bringing a concept from idea to market
  • Gain practical experience developing an idea into a tangible outcome
  • Connect with expert innovators and mentors from across the region

Winners of the Innovate Challenge receive a $2,500 prototyping grant and advance to compete for up to $30,000 in cash awards in the InventOR Finals

Registration for competition will open in Fall 2023.
Contact Melissa Mudd if you'd like to be notified.

2021 InventOR - OHSU statewide finalists

Ashraf Samhan and Stephanie MacDonald

Ashraf Samhan (left) and Stephanie MacDonald (right) are medical students in OHSU's Surgical Telehealth Analytics and Research (STAR) Lab led by Dr. Vahagn Nikolian. They won the 2021 Student Innovator Challenge and competed in the InventOR finals on June 25, 2021. Their project is an augmented reality technology designed to enhance medical student training on surgical rotations, with the goal of overcoming disparities in surgical training.

2020 InventOR - OHSU statewide finalists

2020 Innovator Challenge winners

Avathamsa Athirasala (left), a PhD candidate in OHSU Biomedical Engineering, competed in the 2020 InventOR finals for Microcosm, a high throughput screening platform for cell response to microenvironmental conditions.

Daniel Mullee (right), an MD candidate, competed in the 2020 InventOR finals for IntraMon, an intraluminal wireless monitoring device. IntraMon won the Visionary Award for "bold, ambitious thinking that makes a difference in the world."

2019 InventOR - OHSU statewide finalists

Geoff and Erik with their Shift.AI prototype booth

Geoffrey Schau and Erik Burlingame, PhD candidates in OHSU Biomedical Engineering, competed in the 2019 InventOR finals for Shift.AI, an artificial intelligence-powered technology for detecting cancer. Shift.AI won the $2,500 Impact Award.

Ryan Thrower_advancing in InventOR 2019 competition

Ryan Thrower, DMD candidate in OHSU School of Dentistry, competed in the 2019 InventOR finals for Funject, a kid-friendly injection device.

Ongoing & Quarterly programming

OCTRI offers innovation and entrepreneurship programming throughout the year. Review our year-round programming options below.

Lecture graphic

The INVENT Seminar Series hosts experts from the regional life science community to introduce fundamental principles of commercialization and entrepreneurship. This event aims to inspire and guide innovations from the university to the market, offer skill-building opportunities, develop a broad awareness of the commercialization pathway, and create robust networking opportunities.

Participants: The series is open to anyone at OHSU with an interest in innovation as well as the public.

Review series content.  Upcoming schedule and registration info in event list links below.

Upcoming INVENT Seminars

Click on images to view past recordings.
The FDA Regulated Landscape - Title Slide

10/28/2021 Demystifying the Regulatory Landscape: A Roadmap for Healthcare Technologies
Presenter: Brie Stoianoff

INVENT and SoPE: Alternative Funding Panel

3/18/20 Invent and SoPE Alternative Funding Panel

Invent Panelists: Aaron Call, Holly Rockweiler, Fahti Khosrowshahi, and Patti White

6/25/20 Leveraging Market Research and Customer Outreach to Successfully Launch your Idea

This is a screen shot of video recording of the Market Research Deep Dive Seminar hosted with OBI.

11/10/20 Market Research Deep Dive | In Partnership with OTRADI/OBI

Closeup of two people working on grant proposal together.

Increase your SBIR/STTR application's competitiveness with this proposal development resource. OHSU investigators receive free advice and feedback from a panel of SBIR/STTR experts on commercialization strategy and opportunity, research approach, feasibility assessment and overall readiness, among other critical review components. View more detailsClosed to an audience for confidentiality.

Sessions are offered 3 times annually in February, July, and November ahead of major SBIR/STTR deadlines. 

Upcoming Commercialization Design Studios

There are no current Commercialization Design Studios scheduled.

Contact Melissa Mudd if you wish to present or have questions:

Commercialization Design Studios are offered at no-cost to investigators by the Collaborations and Entrepreneurship (C&E) office and the Oregon Clinical and Translational Research Institute (OCTRI).

Promo banner for the OHSU Invent-a-thon happening October 23-25, 2020. Learn more at

OHSU joined forces with MIT Hacking Medicine and partners from across the region to bring you the inaugural OHSU Invent-a-thon on October 24-26, 2020.  A weekend of inter-disciplinary collaboration, inspiration, and creativity tackled pressing challenges that face our health care system.  

Visit the OHSU Inventathon website to learn more about the weekend, participating technologies and teams, post-hack events and resources, as well as plans for 2022.

Commercialization resources

OCTRI's innovation and entrepreneurship team gathers and vets commercialization resources. We store those that pass our vetting process here.

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The federal government provides early-stage capital for startups through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR) grant programs.

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"All about the SBIR Grant Process: An insider's Perspective", a comprehensive look into the SBIR/STTR programs by Dr. Jim O'Halloran, expert SBIR veteran and study section reviewer. 

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NSF Webinar: Start Your Project Pitch. Peter Atherton, an SBIR/STTR Program Director, discusses the first step: the Project Pitch.

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Need assistance with market research for your technology or idea? Survey the competitive landscape with GlobalData Medical.  Schedule an appointment with OHSU's Market Research Lab.

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OHSU's Entrepreneur-In-Residence program supports clinicians and researchers as they develop innovations for commercialization. Learn more about the EIR program.

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Listen to Steve Runnels, one of OHSU's EIRs, discuss his role in an interview by EIR Podcast. 

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ScienceDocs provides writing support services for research and startup funding, publication, and technical communications.  Review additional ScienceDocs resources here.

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Questions? Reach out!

Melissa Mudd, MPH
Innovation Education Manager

Join OHSU's Innovation and Commercialization Mailing List

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OHSU Innovates Impact Report

Learn more about university-wide innovation efforts and successes at OHSU.

Review now

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Biomedical Innovation Program

Apply for funding for your collaborative translational research.

Get the details

OBI BioScience Map

The Oregon Bioscience Incubator (OBI) developed a BioScience Map that captures all known bioscience companies in the Pacific Northwest.  If you would like to add your company to this map, please visit the OBI website.  Start exploring below!