George Mason University

News at Mason

Mason students to hone their skills in summer entrepreneurship program

June 1, 2017   /   by John Hollis

When George Mason University’s Summer Entrepreneurship Accelerator Program kicks off on Monday, June 5, the goal is to foster a collaborative atmosphere where George Mason students and recent graduates gain valuable, real-world business experience.

Twenty-five students are participating in the inaugural eight-week program at the new MIX@Fenwick space, which was conceived and designed as a collaboration space that supports entrepreneurship, innovation, experimentation, and making.

Students will explore the commercialization potential for a product or service idea. Working in teams of two to five members, participants will conduct intensive customer discovery around their particular business idea while assisted by experienced instructors and mentors, said Sean Mallon, Mason’s associate vice president for entrepreneurship and innovation, who is overseeing the program.

“Over the eight weeks, they will be required to talk to 100 customers,” Mallon said. “So, it’s not for the faint of heart. They’ve got to roll up their sleeves and―on day one―they’ve got to start thinking about ‘Who, in my current hypothesis of how the business works, is going to buy my stuff?’ ”

Each participant receives a $4,000 stipend for his or her work in the summer program that runs through Aug. 4.

Like the MIX@Innovation, the MIX@Fenwick is open to the entire Mason community and is also available for special events, seminars and other activities.