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Rainforest Accelerator Program Supports Entrepreneurial Faculty and Students in Developing UNM Technology

UNM Rainforest Innovations has launched a new program called the Rainforest Accelerator. The 10-week long program follows the footsteps of the UNM I-Corps Program and trains teams of entrepreneurial-minded faculty and students on how to transition their STEM-related technology to the marketplace.

The original I-corps program was funded by an NSF grant starting in 2017 and was co-hosted by UNM Rainforest Innovations and UNM’s Innovation Academy. The UNMRI Board of Directors currently funds the program.

“In addition to developing innovative technology, the process of transitioning that technology to the marketplace can be daunting for many people,” said Cara Michaliszyn, Director of Economic Development. “The Rainforest Accelerator is meant to support teams wherever they’re at on their entrepreneurial journey and link them to mentors and resources to help them along the way.”

Throughout the program, teams learn how to determine value propositions, customers, size of market, and market trends for their respective technologies. They are also equipped with $3,000 in seed funding to support market discovery efforts and proof-of-concept prototyping. Teams consist of UNM faculty, staff and/or students, entrepreneurs, and a mentor provided by the program. Meetings take place once per week in the afternoon at the Lobo Rainforest Building Seminar Room and online via Zoom meetings.

UNMRI is currently accepting applications for the spring 2023 cohort and the deadline to apply is February 20, 2023. To learn more and sign up, please visit http://loborainforest.com/rainforestaccelerator/.