learn. launch. fly.

A Great Place to Launch (Your Life)

EIP teaches entrepreneurship as a means to:

  • Personal development and self-actualization
  • Academic and professional development
  • Venture/value creation and development

EIP students are:

  • Creative, holistically thinking
  • Team-oriented, problem solvers
  • Creating change and improving the world

EIP’s mission is to foster an entrepreneurial spirit, create a sense of community and cooperation, and develop innovative and ethical leaders.

Pictured: Leah Whitt, a 2014 alumna who earned her BA in Elementary Education and Teaching,  Leah is currently a 4th Grade teacher in the Montgomery County Public School System.

Tools for Launching

Early Exposure to Entrepreneurship

First and foremost, students receive exposure to entrepreneurial concepts from the outset of their university careers. This helps them approach their given fields with a creative and practical, solutions-oriented perspective they can apply in their upper-division courses and summer internships. Students learn valuable lessons about entrepreneurship and innovation that they can utilize throughout their careers and in their own enterprises. Early coursework focuses on critical thinking skills, opportunity identification and assessment, and development of creative, sustainable solutions.

Self-Assessment and Understanding

We believe that entrepreneurship is an excellent means for self-expression and self-actualization. Many deliverables for the first EIP course are self-reflective, covering personal experiences related to leadership self-assessment, developing goals for their entrepreneurial aspirations, and defining requirements to achieve these goals.

EIP alumna, international business major and Banneker Key Scholar Naya Frazier launched her first venture, Camp Naya, in high school. She joined the inaugural cohort of the Maryland Social Entrepreneur Corps in Nicaragua, which sought to combat poverty across Latin America by supporting small, community-based businesses. Frazier also interned at Activity Rocket and volunteered through Projects Abroad in the Republic of Senegal, a country in West Africa.

We believe that entrepreneurship is an excellent means for self-expression and self-actualization. Many deliverables for the first EIP course are self-reflective, covering personal experiences related to leadership self-assessment, developing goals for their entrepreneurial aspirations, and defining requirements to achieve these goals.

Multiple Sources of Guidance

Students in EIP receive a tremendous level of encouragement and support in pursuing both their academic careers and their entrepreneurial aspirations. EIP staff provides guidance to students regarding their program activities, their careers, and their entrepreneurial pursuits. Mtech and Dingman staff, such as the directors of campus incubators, advise on venture activity, including legal services. Honors College advisors provide guidance to students about their broad academic careers. Departmental academic advisors provide specific guidance within the students’ fields of study. Both EIP and Honors College advisor offices are located in the EIP residence hall to promote convenient and frequent interaction. Courses also include guest speakers such as alumni entrepreneurs and professional experts in specific fields.

Venture & Professional Development Activities

EIP provides co-curricular activities to promote students’ personal, professional and venture development. These include networking events, resume and interviewing workshops, and “start-up subgroup” meetings -- guided group discussion sessions where students come together to share and further develop their ideas. Students also may participate in monthly “Entrepreneur Office Hour” sessions with regional expert advisors.

Financial Support

Students may qualify for seed funding grants of up to $10,000 per venture. There are also an increasing number of sources of funding available elsewhere on campus, and EIP supports students in seeking outside venture funding.

Program Alumni Support

EIP is also designed to support students after they graduate from the Program and the university. We have developed an online student monitoring and contact database called EIP Connect, to keep a history of each student’s activities and mentoring experiences. This online service is meant to facilitate communications and networking activities between the program and its alumni, as well as among the students and graduates themselves.

EIP Students = Leaders

EIP students are winning competitions, receiving prestigious awards, and leading activities and groups across campus and beyond.


  • EIP Terp Tank (annual EIP capstone event)
  • EIP Case Competitions (Corcentric, Ford, CSS)
  • Do Good Challenge (7 prize winners)
  • Deloitte National Case Competition (1 national & 2 campus winners)
  • Target Undergraduate Marketing Case Competition
  • IBM-Watson Case Competition (1st Place)
  • Pitch Dingman (multiple prize winners)
  • Unliever Case Competition
  • BSOS Be the Solution Business Plan Competition
  • HackNC
  • HackUMBC
  • PwC & UMD OCS Client Experience

Student Awards/Honors

  • Commencement Speakers:  Engineering (2), Business, CMNS, BSOS, School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
  • Philip Merrill Presidential Scholars (9)
  • Fullbright Awards/Summer Scholars (4)
  • NOAA/Hollings Scholars (3)
  • Spirit of Maryland Award (2)
  • Sally Sterling Bird Citizenship Award
  • Wilson H. Elkins Citizenship Award
  • Mary Mcleod Bethune Award for Contribution to the Black Student Community
  • Vera Cruz-Kochiyama Award for Contribution to the Asian Student Community
  • Outstanding Member of the University Student Judiciary
  • National University Innovation Fellow
  • Sustainability Awards (3)
  • Winston Writing Awards (2)
  • Omicron Delta Kappa Top 10 Freshmen of the Year
  • Omicron Delta Kappa Outstanding Sophomore
  • Dean's Leadership Award, Smith School of Business
  • Graduate of Distinction, Smith School of Business
  • United Muslim Relief Volunteer Appreciation Award

UMD Experiences

  • Hinman CEOs Program
  • University Senate
  • University Student Judiciary
  • RH Smith School Dean’s Undergraduate Student Advisory Council
  • Honors College Executive Director’s Advisory Board
  • Honors Ambassadors
  • UMD Images
  • NIST Technology Market Assessment Program
  • RISE Leadership Academy
  • Omicron Delta Kappa
  • Sports Business Society
  • SEE Student Events & Entertainment
  • Gamera Human Powered Helicopter Project
  • Startup Shell student-run incubator
  • Black Engineers Society
  • Smith Undergraduate Student Association
  • Residence Hall Association
  • Net Impact UMD
  • Ashoka
  • Bitcamp
  • Enactus
  • Design for America

Venture Creation

  • IT cabling solutions
  • Specialty products design
  • Cloud-based supply chain management
  • Custom apparel and accessories
  • Video gaming for good
  • Wearable consumer technology
  • Affiliate marketing/consulting
  • Mobility access
  • Specialty ethnic apparel
  • Systems consulting & services
  • Mobile music app
  • Business analytics
  • Social networking app
  • Crowdfunded charitable giving
  • Social-networked ecommerce

EIP students Lulu Sun, Jessica Manzione and Alex Wilson were on the winning undergraduate team (with a $2,000 prize) of the Unilever Case Competition, sponsored by the UMD Chapter of the American Marketing Association.

EIP students Ben Hsieh ('16) and Junior Ningwei Li ('15) were part of a team of undergraduates from the University of Maryland that took top honors at the University of Connecticut’s Case Challenge, hosted by Connecticut’s Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER) from October 9-13, 2013, in Storrs, Connecticut.

EIP students Stephanie Graf, '14, and Joseph Damiano, '14, with EIP Director Jay Smith. Stephanie and Joseph were named Merrill Presidential Scholars, while Smith was selected as a faculty mentor. The Merrill Presidential Scholars Program honors the University of Maryland’s most successful seniors and their designated University faculty and K-12 teachers for their mentorship. EIP student Pavan Rangachar ('15) was selected as a Merrill Scholar for 2014-2015.

EIP Companies

Sample Internships

Participation in EIP helps to position students well for amazing internships during their college years.  Here is a list of just some of our students' internships.

  • Accenture
  • Amazon
  • Apollo Group
  • ATK
  • Booz-Allen & Hamilton
  • Calibre CPA Group, PLLC
  • Center for Advanced Transportation Technology
  • Children's National Medical Center
  • China Securities Co. (Beijing)
  • Cyber Security REU
  • Deloitte
  • DC Mayor's Youth Leadership Institute
  • Disney College Program
  • Education Week
  • EMDO Entertainment
  • Eppley Recreation Center
  • Food and Drug Administration
  • FOX Sports
  • GE Capital
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Google
  • Howard County Board of Education
  • JPL - Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • JC Penney
  • KPMG
  • Lockheed Martin/DoD Cyber Crime Center
  • Macy’s
  • MD Governor’s Press Office
  • MD Office of Lt. Governor Anthony Brown
  • NASA-Goddard
  • NewGen Technologies
  • NIH-National Institutes of Health
  • Orbital Sciences
  • Port Authority of NY/NJ
  • PwC Management Consulting
  • Secure the Call
  • SortIQ
  • Stanley Black & Decker
  • TAMID (Israel)
  • Target
  • T. Rowe Price
  • Tetra Tech
  • Toyota
  • Under Armour
  • WL Gore
  • 3Phoenix
  • UMD Center for Social Value Creation
  • UMD Division of Information Technology
  • UMD Institute for Systems Research
  • UMD Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech)
  • UMD Social Enterprise Symposium Marketing
  • UMD Sports Marketing
  • UMD University Book Center


  • UMD BSCI Department, Pigmentation Genes of Cichlid Fish
  • UMD Drug Resistant Disease, Tuberculosis
  • UMD Magnetic Traffic Sensor Lab
  • UMD Space Systems Lab, Propulsion System Design
  • CAPC, Political Analysis
  • Children's Language and Learning, Language Acquisition
  • DC-OC Converter, Mesa Solar Lab
  • Institute for Bioscience and Biotechnology Research
  • NIST, Bio-Nano Devices
  • NIST, Organic Photovoltaics
  • Maryland Vision Science Laboratory
  • Smith Behavioral Lab, Marketing Research

Study Abroad

  • Ecuador (Alternative Spring Breaks)
  • Denmark (Denmark Technical University of Copenhagen)
  • Dominican Republic (Social Entrepreneur Corps)
  • Germany (Spring Semester Abroad)
  • Hong Kong (University of Hong Kong)
  • Israel (TAMID Fellowship, Tel Aviv)
  • Italy/Germany (European Entrepreneurship)
  • Nicaragua (The Peace Project)
  • Nicaragua (Social Entrepreneur Corp)
  • Norway (Semester Exchange with NTNU)
  • Singapore (Nanyang Technological University)
  • Spain (University of Barcelona)
  • Spain (Engineering Abroad)
  • UK (UMD Semester in London)
  • UK (Fulbright Summer Institutes)