Cornell’s Roosevelt Island Campus Invests in Postdoc Technology Entrepreneurs

By Kristina Skorbach, Epoch Times
February 24, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

The Joan and Irwin Jacobs Technion-Cornell Innovation Institute introduced a new program that will allow postdoc graduates to open their business by using a grant in the program as an investment.

The Runway Program was sponsored by Dr. Irwin Mark Jacobs, Founding Chairman and CEO Emeritus of Qualcomm, and his wife Joan Klein Jacobs who established the Jacobs Institute in 2013 with a donation of $133 million.

The Runway Program will allow six postdocs at the PhD level to advance their research and launch new ventures with the Jacobs Institute-funded Runway Award, which serves an investment in the development of the technology, “much like an angel investor’s cash investment might,” says the press release.

“The Runway Program takes its name from the fact that, unlike the now popular launchpad-like accelerator programs, which are generally focused on short-term market risk and customer development with proven technologies, new ventures based on deep technology carry different risks and need a longer time frame,” said Prof. de Haan, who will be leading the one year program.

The Cornell Tech’s 12-acre Roosevelt Island campus is under construction with the first phase opening in 2017. The completed campus will house 2,000 graduate students and will include 2 million square feet of academic, residential, and corporate research and development space.

“Uzi de Haan plays a pivotal role in entrepreneurship at the Technion, whose graduates are among the most successful in creating value through innovation,” said Adam Shwartz, Director of the Jacobs Institute, in the same release.

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