In providing technology transfer services to R&D organizations, Fuentek has developed strategies for maximizing team strengths and skills, solving organizational pickles, and communicating value to leadership. Today’s post can help significantly improve your capabilities and operations. For example, when it comes to understanding how your IP management team is performing, metrics are your greatest ally. They help you get where you want to go by accurately revealing where you are.
At a growing number of universities, technology transfer offices (TTOs) are being asked to educate students about protecting IP, evaluating a technology’s market potential, licensing, and so forth. Making classroom connections has several benefits for the TTO. Read about AUTM panelists’ efforts as well as university training offerings for current and future tech transfer professionals.
Longtime readers of the Fuentek blog know that we have a lot of experience setting up new internship programs for technology transfer offices (TTOs). From planning the program to selecting the candidates to training and mentoring the interns, we’ve done it all. We even published a white paper about it. So today I’d like to have a little fun while I share Fuentek insights about tech transfer internship programs.
Now that we’ve sprung forward into Daylight Savings Time, it is also time for university technology transfer offices (TTOs) to spring ahead with their summer internship programs. March is usually the month when TTOs issue their “Apply Now” announcements for summer interns. But all is not lost for TTOs who are just getting started. Although there are significant advantages when you begin planning a new summer internship program the previous fall, March is not too late to start. For example, it was last spring when a university TTO asked Fuentek for help with establishing their internship program. They wanted to start that coming summer, so we jumped in to help them, using the tricks that we have learned over our long history of establishing effective internship programs…
Updated September 2016 • Even though next summer feels far away, now is the time to begin planning for next summer’s internship program, especially if you’re establishing a new one. Ideally, interns should begin working in the technology transfer office (TTO) at the beginning of the summer following the first year of their graduate program. If you start planning now, you can have the call for applicants go out in early March, interview and select candidates in April, and train them in May.
It’s a bit like a Tolstoy novel: Happy internship programs are all alike. Well, maybe not alike. But they are pretty consistent across the technology transfer spectrum. This was the consensus of panelists and attendees at a session of the recent Association of University Technology Managers® (AUTM®) annual meeting in Anaheim, California. The dynamic and interactive Frequently Asked Questions about Intern Programs session about effective internship programs attracted quite a crowd, especially considering it was one of the final sessions on the last day of AUTM 2012 (an indicator of how important this topic is to university TTOs).
A conversation on one of the AUTM® discussion groups a bit ago focused on formalizing a technology transfer office’s (TTO’s) triage process. The director initiating the discussion was contemplating using interns for technology triage because his resources are limited. He also wanted his licensing project managers to remain focused on getting deals executed. Overall, his plan was to start providing feedback on inventions in a standardized format and within a certain timeframe. And part of the goal was to improve relations and build credibility with faculty.
If you’ve implemented an internship program at your technology transfer office (TTO) this summer, chances are good that your interns are in the thick of doing technology screenings. How is the program going? What are your lessons learned? Are you seeing areas in which you might consider changes for the intern program next year? We’d love to hear from you. Or maybe your TTO’s interns start in the fall. In that case, you might appreciate some of our lessons learned on hiring TTO interns, training them, and the ongoing mentoring that’s needed.
I recently had the opportunity to serve as a panelist at the Careers in Tech Transfer workshop hosted by Duke University Postdoctoral Services and Duke’s Career Center. Along with industry peers Elizabeth Denholm of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Office of Technology Transfer, Kelly Sivertson Parsons of the UNC Office of Technology Development, and Dennis Thomas of Duke’s Office of Licensing & Ventures, I answered questions about how graduate students and postdocs can break into careers in tech transfer and what types of qualities are sought after among job applicants.
As spring is just about to round the corner into summer, our next webinar designed to train your tech transfer interns is also coming soon! Putting Your Interns to Work: A Step-by-Step Process for Technology Screenings will be held May 19th and the las …