Biophys Ed

A new college course is germinating entrepreneurial ambitions by exposing grad students to the startup bug

Physics Entrepreneurship. Sounds like a contradiction in terms, no? Don't tell that to Cyrus Taylor, physics professor at Case Western Reserve University.

Taylor is also the director of a new degree program at CWRU -- a Master's of science in physics entrepreneurship. Two of his biophysics students are off to a good start. Marc Umeno won three business-plan competitions with a test to detect heart disease by tracing the progress of a radioactive material through the bloodstream.

Classmate Nina Pandey is teaming up with a professor to commercialize a new imaging technique to help scientists track disease in lab mice. The other three students are interested in what the program's associate director, Robert D. Hisrich, calls "intrapreneurship" -- academicspeak for being entrepreneurial without giving up a steady paycheck. Considering that physics aims to stretch the boundaries of the known universe, expanding the definition of entrepreneurship is no big deal.

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