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Illinois Proof of Concept Fund Pre-proposal Applications

February 10, 2015

Pre-proposal applications for funding are being accepted now through February 27, 2015

This program helps bridge the gap between University innovations and the marketplace by funding development that will demonstrate an innovation's market viability to potential investors and partners. 

I-POC projects consist of a defined set of milestones that, when completed, help overcome a specific hurdle to an innovation's transfer outside of the University. 

The I-POC Fund is currently made possible by contributions from the following colleges & units and matching funds from the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research. The Office of Technology Management will work with campus alumni and development officers to create an ongoing and sustainable source of funding. 

The I-POC Fund is currently open to projects that originate from a participating college or unit.  However, if you would like to apply for funding and do not see your college listed, please contact the Office of Technology Management. 

Fund Participants

  • College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences
  • Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology
  • College of Education
  • College of Engineering
  • College of Fine & Applied Arts
  • Institute for Genomic Biology
  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
  • School of Social Work

New participants & program options

The Technology Entrepreneur Center is launching the new Faculty Entrepreneurial Fellows program for College of Engineering faculty who are applying for I-POC funding.  This program is underwritten by alumni donations and a match from the College.  Program details are still being developed and will be announced as they are finalized.

The School of Social Work is the latest University unit to join the I-POC program.


Previous proof of concept projects at the University have resulted in:

  • Multiple start-up companies formed
  • Millions raised in venture & angel funding
  • More than $1.3 million in additional government funding support
  • Multiple ongoing discussions with large corporate partners

Submitting a pre-proposal is the first step in applying for this new round of funding

Pre-proposals have two components:

  • a 2-page letter of intent
  • a completed application form (available here as a Word file or PDF) Please note: the Word file will download, it will not open in your browser window.

For more information or questions please contact: Nicole Nair at

Please submit pre-proposals to: (you should receive an acknowledgement within 1-2 days. If you do not, please contact Nicole Nair)

For full details please visit


February 10, 2015
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