November 2012

Stage 2 E-Team Program Guidelines

Stage 2 E-Team Program Guidelines - Applicants are strongly encouraged to read the entire guidelines prior to submitting.

Introduction | Selection Criteria | Stage 2 Funding | Required Stage 2 Workshop | Coaching | How to Apply | The Stage 2 Proposal | Stage 2 Review and Notification Process | If Your Proposal is Approved

NOTE: Only teams already accepted into Stage 1 of the E-Team Program are eligible to apply for Stage 2. Please refer to the E-Team Program guidelines for more information on initial application to the program. Stage 2 applications must be submitted to NCIIA via email. Specific instructions will be shared with Stage 1 teams at the Stage 1 workshop.


Stage 2: up to $20,000 + Stage 2 workshop + tactical coaching + network

Stage 2 of the E-Team Program is typically 18 months and is intended to support teams in further developing their technology invention/innovation and plan for commercialization. Accepted Stage 1 E-Teams may apply for Stage 2 of the program after attending the required Stage 1 workshop. Please refer to the event schedule section of the E-Team Program guidelines for the 2014/2015 schedule of events and deadlines.

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Selection Criteria

Stage 2 applications will be evaluated against the same 4 elements used for the evaluation of Stage 1 program applications:

  1. Technology innovation and feasibility
  2. Business model and commercial potential
  3. Team composition, commitment, and expertise (including any advisors and/or mentors)
  4. Positive social and/or environmental impact

Greater emphasis will be placed on the business model and commercial potential when assessing Stage 2 applications.

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Stage 2: Up to $20,000

A portion of the Stage 2 grant funds must be used to cover team costs associated with attending the required Stage 2 workshop. Funds may also be requested for supplies, equipment, and/or expenses related to project development and advancement, including preliminary legal fees and student stipends. E-Team Program grant funds cannot be used to cover institutional overhead.

More information about eligible and ineligible expenses can be found in the “how to apply” section of these guidelines.

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Required Stage 2 Workshop

Stage 2 helps teams further refine their business strategy and focuses specifically on operationalizing each aspect of their plan.

Full participation in a Stage 2 workshop is required in order to receive Stage 2 grant funds. A minimum of 2 team members must attend the entire workshop; teams may not attend a partial workshop. See the event schedule section of E-Team Program guidelines for 2014/2015 schedule of workshop dates and deadlines.

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Stage 2 teams participate in six monthly coaching sessions which will begin after attending the Stage 2 workshop. Coaching sessions will begin approximately one month after the Stage 2 workshop and will be held via teleconference. Teams will be grouped according to stage and sector at the discretion of NCIIA.

As with the workshops, participation in these coaching sessions is a required component of the E-Team Program. Participants will present on their progress based on the milestone planning started in Stage 1 and completed in Stage 2.

Preliminary Stage 2 coaching schedule (specific session times are TBD and will accomodate participants in all time zones):

If you attend the 
August 14-16, 2014 Stage 2 workshop...

your coaching Fridays will be: 

  1. Sept. 26, 2014
  2. Oct. 24, 2014
  3. Nov. 21, 2014
  4. Dec. 19, 2014
  5. Jan. 30, 2015
  6. Feb. 27, 2015

If you attend the
January 23-25, 2015 Stage 2 workshop...

your coaching Fridays will be:

  1. Feb. 27, 2015
  2. Mar. 27, 2015
  3. April 17, 2015
  4. May 29, 2015
  5. June 26, 2015
  6. Aug. 28, 2015

If you attend the  May 8-10, 2015 Stage 2 workshop...

 your coaching Fridays will be:

  1. June 26, 2015
  2. August 28, 2015
  3. Sept 25, 2015
  4. October 30, 2015
  5. November 20, 2015
  6. December 18, 2015

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How to Apply

Stage 2 applications must be submitted to NCIIA via email. Specific instructions will be shared with Stage 1 teams at the Stage 1 workshop.

*NOTE* If your Principal Investigator and/or Administrative Contact has changed since your Stage 1 approval, please contact us.

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The Stage 2 Proposal

The Stage 2 proposal consists of the following components:

  • Required proposal components combined together in a single PDF (includes the revised Stage 1 proposal narrative, proposed budget, completed milestones chart, letter(s) of support, and key team member resumes)
  • Additional (optional) appendices combined together into a single PDF (up to 5 total - can be the same appendices submitted with the Stage 1 application, or can be modified)
  • Weblinks and/or videos (optional) up to 4 links can be included (websites, video links, articles, etc.)

Details on each component are provided below in these guidelines.


Required Proposal Components
The following documents are required as part of the Stage 2 proposal and must be included in the following order, combined together into a single PDF.

  1. Revised narrative (no more than 5 pages)
  2. Proposed budget (Please use the Stage 2 budget template)
  3. Milestones chart
  4. Letters of support (a minimum of 1 is required, a maximum of 3 may be included)
  5. Team member resumes (up to 4 resumes, 3-page limit per resume)

1. REQUIRED: Revised Narrative

Using the reviewer feedback shared with teams prior to the Stage 1 workshop, as well as the milestones and learning outcomes from the Stage 1 workshop, teams will revise their previously submitted 5-page narrative using the same basic structure and parameters.

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2. REQUIRED: Proposed Budget
Your proposed budget is a key element of your Stage 2 application. Up to $20,000 may be requested and should support the team’s successful completion of the milestones laid out in your Stage 2 proposal. The grantee institution owns any equipment purchased with an E-Team grant funds. Please note that NCIIA will typically not fund the purchase of equipment that is considered part of a college or university infrastructure. Proposed funds for equipment should be less than 1/3 the total proposed budget.

The proposed budget should be completed using NCIIA’s Stage 2 E-Team budget template. Instructions and specific expense definitions can be found in the budget template, and are also summarized below. Be sure to explain your proposed expenses in the “justifications” section in the budget template or in a separate sheet.

Eligible expenses examples:

  • Materials and supplies.
  • Student stipends (no more than $3,000 per person or $7,500 per project).
  • Travel.
  • Equipment expenses totaling less than 1/3 the total proposed budget.
  • Consulting and technical services
  • Expenses related to performing patent searches, disclosures and applications, or creating marketing or business plans.

Ineligible expenses examples:

  • Equipment expenses above 1/3 the total proposed budget
  • Indirect costs/overhead.
  • Faculty salaries.
  • Legal and other expenses of business formation and operation.
  • Publicity expenses.
  • Student stipends totaling over $3,000 per person or $7,500 per project.

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3. REQUIRED: Milestones Chart
Create and submit a chart that describes the milestones that your team expects to complete during the Stage 2 grant period (approximately 18 months). This document is an important part of the Stage 2 proposal. Accepted Stage 2 teams will further refine these milestones during the Stage 2 workshop and in the 6 monthly coaching sessions following the workshop.

How does this differ from the Workplan included in the narrative?  While the Workplan is a big-picture, long-range plan to get you from today to your first sale, the Milestones chart should focus on shorter-term goals--it's what you'll be doing during the 18 months of the grant period.

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4. REQUIRED: Letter(s) of Support
Letters of support demonstrate to reviewers that there is institutional support for your project and/or verify partnerships discussed in your narrative. At least one letter is required as part of your proposal. You may include up to three total. More weight will be given to letters of support from potential customers, partners industry experts, and mentors that verify the key elements of your proposal over general letters of support from friends, family, or supportive faculty (although these may also be appropriate and of value). The same letter(s) used in your Stage 1 proposal may be used for the Stage 2 proposal, but it may be appropriate to obtain new support letters based on reviewer feedback on your Stage 1 proposal and/or learning outcomes from the Stage 1 workshop.

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5. REQUIRED: Resumes
Resumes should be no more than three pages each and are only required for key team members, with a maximum of four resumes included. We do not need resumes for the Administrative Contact or other non-key team members/collaborators. The same resumes used in your Stage 1 proposal may be used for the Stage 2 proposal.

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Optional: Additional Appendices
Up to five additional appendices may be included in your proposal and must be combined into one PDF. These may be the same documents included in the Stage 1 proposal, or they may be different. Appendices may include but are not limited to:

  1. Images demonstrating design and/or technical feasibility (drawings, photographs, etc.)
  2. A summary of prior art
  3. Literature review summary
  4. Any data collected as part of testing your technology
  5. Any other relevant supporting materials

Note: Sheer volume of material is not an asset. Reviewers are directed to use supporting materials only to supplement the 5-page narrative. Therefore, key information should be included in the narrative.

Optional: Weblinks and/or Videos
In addition to the appendices combined as 1 PDF mentioned above, teams may upload up to 4 weblinks, such as links to online articles, videos and/or other relevant online data.

You may submit a 1-2 minute video pitch to describe your technology to reviewers. If included, the video should state the problem and describe your innovation and the impact of the team's solution. Clear, non-technical language is acceptable and may be preferable. To view some samples, watch the top videos submitted by participants in NCIIA's annual Open Minds event. If you choose to include a video as part of your proposal, a link to the video should be uploaded as an appendix item and referenced in the narrative.

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The Stage 2 Review and Notification Process

  • Stage 2 proposals will be reviewed by an external panel of reviewers made up of individuals from academia, industry, nonprofits and/or venture capital with experience in the technology areas and in the commercialization of early stage innovations.
  • Your team's Stage 2 proposal will likely be evaluated by different people than those who evaluated your Stage 1 proposal.
  • NCIIA will notify applicants of the status of their proposals via email within 60 days of the submission deadline.
  • We anticipate that about 50% of the submitted Stage 2 proposals will be approved. Stage 2 grant funding will not be disbursed to teams until they commit to participate in the required Stage 2 workshop as specified in the event schedule section of E-Team Program guidelines.
  • Occasionally, reviewers invite a team to resubmit their proposal in a future cycle for re-consideration, after certain concerns or questions are addressed. Applicants invited by reviewers to resubmit should contact NCIIA to discuss the reviewer feedback in detail and make sure they understand the questions and concerns raised. Resubmitted proposals must specify how previous concerns have been addressed.

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If Your Proposal is Approved

Principal Investigators for NCIIA grants are responsible for reporting on Stage 2 team activities and will be prompted via email at the end of the 18 month period to complete a final report online. If you are accepted into Stage 2, reporting deadlines will be detailed in your award letter which is sent to the Administrative Contact, with a copy to the Principal Investigator.

  • NCIIA will send the Principal Investigator a formal notification letter and approved budget.
  • Grant funds will be awarded to the team’s college or university for the use of the team.
  • Stage 2 E-Teams will need to commit to sending at least 2 key team members to a Stage 2 workshop (team expenses should be included in the Stage 2 proposed budget).  See the event schedule in the E-Team Program guidelines for workshop dates.
  • NCIIA will send a contract for signature to the Administrative Contact identified by the team. Once this award letter is signed and returned to NCIIA, funds can be disbursed.

***Please note: NCIIA does not allow overhead to be taken out of E-Team Program grant awards.

Congratulations, you read the Stage 2 E-Team Program guidelines!If you have questions that are not answered in the above, please contact us: or call (413) 587-2172 and press 1 for the grants team.

University Innovation Summit Resources

Slidedeck presentations:

Morning plenary

Introduction - Phil Weilerstein, NCIIA

NSF programs overview - Anita LaSalle, NSF

Building university capacity - Babu DasGupta, NSF

Priorities for improving opportunities for commercialization - Angela Shartrand, NCIIA

Keynote talk - Joseph DeSimone, University of North Carolina, North Carolina State University

IP Panel

Improving access to IP for research ventures - Mark Sedam, UNH

Improving access to IP for research ventures - Gayatri Varma, University of Maryland

Mentoring Panel

Creating an effective program - Gordon McConnell, Arizona State University

Creating an effective program - Paul Olean, MIT Venture Mentoring Service

Creating an effective program - Rosibel Ochoa, UC San Diego

Funding Panel

Seeding innovation: Funding and resources to support emergent innovators - Aileen Huang-Saad, University of Michigan

Open Minis

Open Minis are quick, dynamic, 5-minute PPT presentations. They follow the Ignite style: 20 slides that automatically advance every 20 seconds. The format keeps presentations concise, fast-paced and engaging.

We strongly encourage playfulness in the presentation of your Open Mini. Make it fun! Use an absolute minimum of words and a maximum of large, visually captivating images.

Express your interest by giving us a one-paragraph description of your potential Open Mini presentation.

It can be on any of the topics listed in the CFP (see

Here's a sample of what we're looking for from an event held at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History on the topic of "spaces of invention," i.e., the physical environment's impact on learning and innovation.


Pecha Kucha @ Open 2013

The National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance (NCIIA) invites participants to submit Pecha Kucha presentations to be given during plenaries at Open 2013, March 22-23, 2013 at the Renaissance Hotel in Washington, D.C.

What is Pecha Kucha?
Pecha Kucha is a presentation methodology in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each (six minutes and 40 seconds in total). The format keeps presentations concise and fast-paced.

Pecha Kucha at Open 2013
We will be hosting two 40-minute Pecha Kucha sessions at the conference: one on Friday after lunch, and one before the start of the Open Minds event at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.

We have a distinct theme for each session: program models (examples of ways of teaching entrepreneurship) for one, and “places of invention” (exploring how physical spaces affect learning outcomes) for the other.  

Express your interest by giving us a one-paragraph description of your potential Pecha Kucha presentation. Additionally, for the places of invention session, please submit a photograph of your space, and outline your programming and whom you reach.

For the program model session, answer the question, “How is this program innovative?”

For the places of invention session, answer the question, “How does invention happen here?”

Smithsonian opportunity
“Places of invention” Pecha Kucha presenters will have the opportunity to be part of the Smithsonian Institute’s Places of Invention project, which is mapping spaces of innovation across America. Take advantage of this exciting opportunity!

CleanNG LLC E-Team picked as a Global Entrepreneurship Week top 50

2011 E-Team CleanNG LLC was picked as one of Global Entrepreneurship Week's top 50—a list of the 50 most innovative new companies competing in Startup Open, GEW's competition recognizing startups with high-growth potential. The team is now in the running for the grand prize, a trip to Rio de Janeiro to serve as an official delegate to the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in March 2013. 

Visit CleanNG's web site.

Meet the Fall 2013 Student Ambassador Candidates

Meet the Fall 2013 Student Ambassador Candidates!

Student Ambassador candidates are students involved or interested in entrepreneurship and innovation activities on their campuses. Becoming a Student Ambassador adds value and national relevance to students' existing activities and the training provides valuable tools and a national support network of like-minded students.

Students interested in participating in a spring online training (dates TBD) to serve as a Student Ambassador in the 2013-14 academic year click here.

Faculty interested in sponsoring a student for the spring online training click here.

Fall 2013 Student Ambassador Candidates:

For a glimpse of some online training materials check out the Student Ambassadors blog:

AUTM surveys universities about student IP policies and successful practices

AUTM, ACCT Canada, the NCIIA and PraxisUnico recently conducted a survey to develop resources to facilitate more productive commercialization of student inventions. More than 90 colleges and universities in 15 countries participated in the survey. Here are some highlights from the survey results.

  • 72% of the survey participants were from public schools and 24% private.
  • 26% of the schools reported 5 or fewer patentable or copyrightable student inventions occur annually, 44% reported 6 - 25, 18% reported 26 - 100, and 12% reported more than 100.
  • Ongoing efforts to support student entrepreneurship and/or invention on campus included a variety of programs:
    • Entrepreneurship classes, bootcamps or other programs   84%
    • Business plan competitions   72%
    • Incubators for student-owned companies   50%
    • Student entrepreneurship funding   41%
    • NCIIA programs   10%
  • 72% of universities and colleges provide resources to help students learn about and navigate IP and commercialization issues.
  • 70% have a formal policy and/or guidelines addressing ownership of student inventions.
  • 36% have formal procedures for processing student inventions.
  • 48% proactively inform faculty and staff about policies or guidelines relating to student ownership rights and how it could impact them.
  • 51% proactively inform companies working with students on R&D, or involved in student education in any other way, about policies or guidelines relating to student ownership rights and how it could impact them.

Additional data and resources will be available through AUTM, ACCT Canada, NCIIA and PraxisUnico in the coming year. These resources will include:

  • A database of policies, guidelines and best practices.
  • A new chapter in the AUTM Technology Transfer Practice Manual.
  • Webinars for students, technology transfer offices and companies using students as interns or in connection with a practicum or other part of a student's educational program.