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Tuesday, July 16th 2019

SDSU Technology Transfer Office

Entrepreneur Internships Around New Technology

The mission of the Technology Transfer Office (TTO) is to help move creativity, specifically Intellectual Property (IP), from SDSU and the SDSU Research Foundation into the public marketplace. IP is new knowledge in the form of inventions, devices, designs, procedures, and remedies. It also includes copyrightable work such as textbooks, software, multimedia, audiovisual works, new methods of teaching, and other types of work.

The TTO helps identify academic projects with commercial value. It then works to protect, develop, market, and license intellectual property rights. An important function of the office is to encourage embryonic technologies or other creative works and transform them into useful "products." In some cases this means new businesses.

Prior to 1980 much of the intellectual property that had been funded through NSF or NIH and other granting agencies remained at the university level and was not actively commercialized. In 1980, Congress passed the Bayh-Dole Act. This, with several related laws passed subsequently, provided universities with both the incentive and the responsibility to both promote and manage intellectual property. Technology transfer offices were created on university campuses across the country to bring these new opportunities to market for the greater good of the public. San Diego State University and the San Diego State University Research Foundation in 1998 created the Technology Transfer Office to commercialize its intellectual property.

In entrepreneurship programs around the world, MBA students are being encouraged to work closely with university technology transfer offices. Many students are becoming interns at these offices. Through these internships, students gain first-hand experience in evaluating the commercialization of technologies locate technologies that can form the basis for a business. The Technology Transfer office at SDSU has partnered with the Lavin Entrepreneurship Center to offer internship opportunities for our MBA students interested in understanding the process of transitioning a technology to the marketplace. While these internships will be unpaid, the students involved with the Technology Transfer Office will gain valuable experience in serving as a licensing and marketing associate. Interns would be responsible for doing some of the following tasks::

  • Analyze newly disclosed technologies for market viability/feasibility and patentability.
  • Champion disclosed technologies through the disclosure process, through filing of provisional patent applications and into first stage commercialization.
  • Develop licensing valuation analysis.
  • Map the licensing field and implement marketing to potential licensees.
  • Develop strategy for start-up companies for technologies not appropriate for licensing.
  • Work with San Diego's business community to develop the technology including CONNECT, Tech Coast Angels and the Mayor's Office.
  • Analyze a portfolio of technologies and recommend portfolio management actions.

If you are interested in an internship opportunity, please contact Tommy Martindale, Director of Technology Transfer Office at (619) 594-0791 or visit the website at

New knowledge in the form of inventions, devices, designs, procedures and remedies as well as copyrightable work such as textbooks, software, multimedia audiovisual works, new methods of teaching and other types of work is referred to as intellectual property (IP). The faculty, staff and students of San Diego State University as part of their academic mission, produce intellectual property.

The TTO maintains and upholds confidential disclosure agreements, patents, and copyright agreements that protect creators and their creativity during the development stage. To bring the product to market requires a number of stages including market research, commercial application and product assessment, review of the competition, and search for manufacturers, licensees, and distributors.

Entrepreneurship Distinction
  • Top 25 among America's Most Entrepreneurial Universities 2015.
  • Top 10 in list of "America's Best Colleges for Entrepreneurs."
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The Lavin Entrepreneurship Center at San Diego State University serves SDSU students, entrepreneurs and business leaders through entrepreneurial curriculum, workshops, internships, resources and events. For information browse the Programs section of our website, subscribe to the Lavin Center Calendar and sign up for the Center's Entrepreneurial Fuel Newsletter. Entrepreneur resources such as the Lavin Center resume guide, marketing and business planning tools and more can be found in the Resources section of our site.

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