UST School of engineering to host 'Invention to Venture' Oct. 21

UST School of Engineering to host ‘Invention to Venture’ Oct. 21  

The University of St. Thomas School of Engineering will host “Invention to Venture,” a daylong workshop that explores technology entrepreneurship, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 21, in Room 100 of McNeely Hall.

“Invention to Venture” is part of a national effort to tap the entrepreneurial ambitions of students and faculty on college campuses in the United States. Participants discover how to turn an idea into a new-product venture, and how to connect with local people and programs to help them turn their ideas into reality. Participants will learn technology entrepreneurship basics, build their networks and develop plans to move their ideas forward.

Workshop sessions and presenters include:

  • “Is Technology Entrepreneurship for You?” with Susan Critzer, chairperson of the board of Inver Grove Heights, Minn.-based MedicalCV, a manufacturer of cardiovascular medical devices
  • “Idea Validation and Opportunity Assessment,” with Jay Schrankler, vice president of IP licensing and marketing for Honeywell International’s Automation and Controls Solutions business
  • “Issues in Intellectual Property” with Minneapolis patent attorneys Micheal Schwegman, founding partner of the Schwegman, Lundberg, Woessner and Kluth firm, and Kyle Peterson, of the Patterson, Thuente, Skaar and Christensen firm
  • “Finding the Money” with Daniel Tenenbaum, an attorney with the Gray, Plant Mooty firm, who focuses his legal practice in the representation of emerging growth companies; Michael Moore, director of the William C. Norris Institute in the St. Thomas College of Business; and Joe Phillips, an adviser to Aethlon Capital, a private investment bank serving late-state venture and high-growth companies
  • “Building the Team” with Steve Case, founder and chairman of Minneapolis-based Cyberoptics Corp., a technology manufacturing company
  • “Power Networking” with Dale Wahlstrom, vice president of cardiac rhythm management ventures for Medtronic Inc. and chair of the BioBusiness Alliance of Minnesota
  • “The Perfect Business Plan, Slide Show and ‘Elevator Speech’” with Mac Lewis of Sherpa Partners, a Minnetonka-based technology investment firm
  • “Marketing and Sales for Early Stage Companies” with Dennis Leisz, president and CEO of Eden Prairie-based Wavecrest Corp., a semiconductors, components and electronics company

“Invention to Venture” also is co-hosted by the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance, a network of nearly 200 U.S. colleges and universities that fosters experiential invention, innovation and entrepreneurship education; the International Institute for Women Entrepreneurs at the College of St. Catherine, and Dunwoody College of Technology. Among “Invention to Venture” local sponsors are AbleNet Inc., the Nicholson Foundation, Productivity Inc., Restore Medical, the William C. Norris Institute, and the Toro Co.

“Invention to Venture” is designed for science and technology students and faculty, members of the business community and interested entrepreneurs.

Registration fees range from $10 for undergraduate students to $50 for business people. Fees include lunch, refreshments and conference materials. Scholarships are available. Register online at

For more information about “Invention to Venture,” e-mail Allen Aspengren of the St. Thomas School of Engineering,, or call (651) 962-5750 or (952) 435-8644.