Letters to Community

Committee on Student Entrepreneurship (CSE)
February 17, 2012

The Dean for Graduate Education, Dean for Undergraduate Education, and Vice President for Research and Associate Provost have assembled a Committee on Student Entrepreneurship (CSE) with the motivation, charge, sponsors, process and membership detailed below.

Student interest in entrepreneurship has exploded on the MIT campus, in particular over the last decade. Examples include the student-run $100K Business Plan Competition, the MIT Global Challenge, the MIT Entrepreneurs Club, i-Teams, MIT TechLink, the Sloan Global Entrepreneurship Lab, and the MIT-China Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum, to name a few. The results of these activities are astounding; the $100K Business Plan competition has helped launch more than a dozen companies currently valued at more than $100 million, with at least two worth more than $1 billion. Aside from the societal benefits of technology transfer, entrepreneurship activities have deep educational, professional, and personal development benefits to students and should continue to be fostered and supported by MIT. Students often seek guidance for engaging in entrepreneurial activities from faculty, department heads and internal organizations, such as the Technology Licensing Office (TLO) and the Venture Mentoring Service (VMS), and all have indicated they could benefit from a knowledge of and clarification of policies and procedures, guidelines, roles and responsibilities, and best practices.


The charge of the Committee on Student Entrepreneurship (CSE) is as follows:

  • To review MIT and peer policies and procedures, best practices, and resources, such as Responsible Conduct of Research Training, as well as the current literature relevant to student involvement in entrepreneurship and commercialization activities including, for example: avoidance; management and examples of conflict of interest; pre-partnering agreements; engagement in faculty outside professional activities; commitment to openness of research; use of Institute resources; intellectual property; outside relationship disclosure; specific considerations for international students; consulting privileges and restrictions; etc.;
  • To consider fairness and protection of both students and faculty; openness of research; peer and national best practices; commitment to and impact on technology transfer; the proposal of any changes in policies and procedures to the Committee on Graduate Programs (CGP);
  • To create a relevant summary and frequently asked questions document clarifying relevant policies and procedures, guidelines, roles and responsibilities, and best practices for broad distribution.


Dean for Graduate Education Christine Ortiz
Dean for Undergraduate Education Daniel E. Hastings
Vice President for Research and Associate Provost Claude R. Canizares


The committee will consult broadly with faculty, students, staff, Departments, Laboratories and Centers, the International Students Office and International Scholars Office, the MIT Office of General Counsel, the MIT Ombuds Office, the MIT Technology Licensing Office, The MIT Venture Mentoring Service, The Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation, as well as relevant MIT committees, such as the Committee on Intellectual Property (CIP).


George Barbastathis (Mechanical Engineering)
Angela M. Belcher (Materials Science and Engineering; Biological Engineering)
Aditya S. Bhujle (Graduate Student Representative; Aeronautics and Astronautics)
Turner K. Bohlen (Undergraduate Student Representative, Physics)
Anantha P. Chandrakasan (CSE Co-chair; Head, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science)
Yoel Fink (CSE Co-chair; Materials Science and Engineering; Director, Research Laboratory of Electronics)
David K. Gifford (Electrical Engineering and Computer Science)
Paula T. Hammond (Chemical Engineering)
Edward B. Roberts (MIT Sloan School of Management)
Robert T. Sauer (Biology; Chair, Committee on Graduate Programs)
Anthony J. Sinskey (Microbiology; Health Sciences and Technology)

Staff to the Committee: Laura Marie Saegebarth (Sloan School of Management)


The committee is expected to run April 15th, 2012 - September, 31st 2012.