Innovation Design & Entrepreneurship in Action

Bring ideas to life.

May 1 to June 19, 2015

IDEA combines innovation with business providing hands-on, practical opportunities. Students will learn what is necessary to create an innovative product and build the business model to deliver it.

What you will learn

The Innovation Design & Entrepreneurship in Action (IDEA) experience exposes participants to numerous ideas, tools and experiences in just two short weeks.

Here are a few of the concepts you'll learn to apply to help bring ideas to life:

  • Need finding and User-based Design
  • Radical Ideation and Concept Development
  • Sketch Modeling and Persuasive Presentations
  • Business Model Generation and Validation
  • Intellectual Property Protection Strategy
  • Competitive Benchmarking & Product Pricing
  • Product Costing and Project Economics
  • Rapid 3D Product Prototyping
  • Computer-aided Design and Manufacturing
  • Retail Economics and Product Packaging


This program is designed for undergrads and recent college graduates who may want to start their own businesses or work for startups.

Students majoring in:

  • Design (2D or 3D)
  • Computer Science
  • Any Engineering Discipline
  • Economics or Business
  • Studio Arts
  • Performance Arts

Students interested in:

  • Product, Graphic, or Web Design
  • Applied Innovation Processes
  • Creating Entrepreneurial Ventures
  • Developing New Business Models
  • Inventing and Patenting Ideas
  • Tinkering & Making


$6,000: Cost includes housing, meals and course materials. If housing is not needed, waive $500.


Vanderbilt Owen Graduate School of Management, Nashville, TN


Complete the form at right with your contact information, and then submit the following in an email showing your name as the subject line to Program Director

  • Essay (500 words or less) – Describe a creative project that you worked on during the last year that required independent thinking. Include a photo or picture, if possible.
  • Your Resume
  • Transcript(s) from Any College Attended (official or unofficial)

You will be contacted within seven business days to schedule a brief Skype interview.


IDEA has limited spaces available. We encourage you to apply early for priority in the application review and interview process.

Early Application – Tuesday, February 25, 2015 (Receive $500 discount)
Final Round – Thursday April 17, 2015


Just contact the IDEA staff at 615.322.6795 or

Your Mentor

David Owens, PhD

Clinical Professor of Business Strategy and Innovation


David Owens' research has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and other major news outlets. He holds a PhD in Management Science and Engineering from Stanford University.

See a video of Prof. Owens talking about his book, Creative People Must Be Stopped: 6 Ways We Kill Innovation (Without Even Trying).