MSIVD Logo

Priority Deadline, April 15
Applications accepted on a rolling basis from now until fall. Apply now.

We’re looking for ambitious, bold, creative thinkers with an insatiable desire to start something that makes a difference in the world.

Business+Engineering+Design

The MSIVD program is a transdisciplinary partnership between three leading schools at Arizona State University

Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering + W. P. Carey School of Business + Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts

ASU MS Innovation and Venture Development Program Launch Video

A master’s program that delivers what’s been missing from other entrepreneurial programs.

Leave with a road map for successful ventures, whether you’re looking to start something on your own or lead innovation inside a large organization. Every project is road tested, with the goal of delivering financial, social and environmental value simultaneously. 

A studio-based, student-centric program

Students become entrepreneurs from the day they walk in, working with a small founding team to make things happen.
Students will be in a failure-friendly space with the goal of learning faster. Instructors will mentor students and help them find the resources needed to achieve their goals.

MSIVD Faculty Meeting

Venture based; learning by doing.

Students create, develop and defend their ventures supported by the resources and academic rigor of ASU. Work will be honed, tested and challenged by like-minded peers, mentors and successful venture capitalists and leaders helping to refine learning and execution.

Take on challenges that matter

We’re asking the most exciting leaders and thinkers we know to share the challenges they’d like MSIVD teams to address — a pain point, a need, what they hope someone will invent something to solve. Scroll through what your future mentors think, or come up with challenges of your own.

Studio Courses

Studio courses support the innovation and venture development process

  • 1 | Discover + Insight
    The tools and experience to explore and immerse in industry or sector customer needs, competitive landscape and cultural context; where to begin, evaluate information, develop insights.

  • 2 | Problem Reframing
    Problem reframing, diagnosing problems, pushing past conventional assumptions to see problems as opportunities for breakthrough solutions.
  • 3 | Explore, Fail, Solve
    Develop prototypes of a product, service or system using the scrum method in 3 two-week sprints, including ideation, success indicators, making, testing, evaluation and revision.
  • 4 | Business Model
    Articulate how the solution will reach customers at a profit, value proposition, supply chain, customer segments, revenue model, key resources, activities, partners and cost structure.
  • 5 | Scale
    Assess growth opportunities and prepare financial and capitalization plan, explore diversified products and scaling implications, quality control and risk mitigation strategies, investor pitch.

In addition, two support courses prepare students with the power skills required to become leaders of innovation

  • Fundamentals of Entrepreneurial Leadership
    Practice “being” a leader, at the personal, interpersonal, and team levels.
  • Scaling Entrepreneurial Leadership
    Learn to lead by summoning resources, socially engaging surrounding communities, and navigating through organizational leadership challenges associated with growth.
  • Intellectual Property
    Intellectual Property is an important concern of the MS IVD faculty and program administrators - so is innovation. Therefore, MS IVD program leaders will aim to help all students, stakeholders, and sponsors understand the basic principles of IP policies within affiliated organizations. In turn, we will help all parties involved make common sense decisions about how to best protect individual and organizational IP interests, while being careful not to stifle innovation and economic development opportunities. In short, the MS IVD program leaders promise to not only education students about IP best practices, but also to work collaboratively with relevant employers, sponsors, and stakeholders to develop innovative, “win-win-win” IP agreements, which are at the core of many breakthrough innovations.
  • STEM Certification
    The degree has a STEM certification, which activates expanded benefits for veterans, as well as scholarship programs structured to support students in STEM-related fields. It also provides international students with a 24-month Optional Practical Training extension beyond the standard 12-month OPT limit.

Faculty

Advisors

Tomorrow’s entrepreneurial leaders need to be facile, creative thinkers, cross-disciplinary problem solvers and inspirational leaders who develop these same skills in others. They need not only to master their own field of expertise, but also to be conversant with the other disciplines required to scale a successful enterprise.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What makes this degree different?

MSIVD is a transdisciplinary degree, erasing traditional academic siloes. Venture development and leadership require a cross-section of knowledge and skill, and thus, the curriculum cuts across business, engineering and design, the three academic disciplines that are most often cited by innovators and leaders as the key to innovation. 

Can you explain what experience-based learning means?

Students are expected to create and develop a start-up venture and defend it. They will go through each step of the process, so that by the time they graduate, they will have lived experience in innovation and venture development. Their work will be honed, tested and challenged by peers, faculty, mentors, venture capitalists and entrepreneurial leaders from within and outside ASU.

I work for a company and am going back to school. Is this program for me?

Absolutely. This program teaches not only entrepreneurship but also intrapreneurship. Your learning and experience will be valuable to an existing organization and its growth just as it would be valuable in a startup or early stage environment.

What are the admission requirements for this program?

In addition to the MSIVD program requirements, applicants must fulfill the Graduate College admission requirements. Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor’s or master’s degree in any field from a regionally accredited institution. They will need to submit the online graduate application and application fee, official transcripts, professional resume, statement of intent, and proof of English proficiency (international students).

What is the deadline to apply?

The priority deadline for this program is April 15th for Fall admission. We will continue to accept applications following the deadline on a rolling basis, dependent on space availability.

What undergraduate degree is required?

Anyone with an undergrad degree can apply. There is no requirement for a degree in one of the three main disciplines of the program.

What degree will I receive?

An MS in Innovation and Venture Development – from the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, the W. P. Carey School of Business and Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.

How much will this program cost?

In addition to ASU’s standard tuition cost per credit hour and mandatory student fees, there is a program fee of $4,000.00 per semester associated with the MSIVD program. This is a one year, 30 credit hour program during which students will enroll in 12 credits in the fall and spring semesters, following by 6 credits in the summer. The current cost per credit hour can be viewed by using ASU’s online Tuition Estimator tool.

Are scholarship opportunities available?

Competitive scholarships will be available through the program. Additionally, all students are encouraged to use the ASU Scholarship Search to locate scholarships available to students of The Design School. The MSIVD program also has a STEM designation, which activates expanded benefits for veterans, as well as scholarship programs structured to support students in STEM-related fields.

Can the program be completed on a part-time basis and/or while working?

The program is a full time one year graduate degree program and is very challenging. It is not possible to complete it on a part-time basis. However, we are actively recruiting for students who have had some work experience and now want to expand their horizons at the graduate level, but they will need to be able to work on the degree full time.

What is a typical day?

Because the program is venture-based, assignments and experiences will evolve throughout the year. It is a campus-based program, and the interaction between team members is a core experience and one of the most valuable elements.

What do we mean by “venture.”

We define venture in the broadest way possible: inside corporations, independent enterprises, for-profit, social ventures, systems, products and services.

Do I need to have an idea for a product or service before applying?

No. In fact, part of the learning is for students to choose a “pain point” and develop an idea that solves the problem they identify. Pain points may come from industry partners, from faculty and from students.

What if I already have an idea I want to work on?

Because it’s important to learn to identify needs, we are looking for students with a problem they want to solve, or an issue they care about more than an answer. MSIVD is not an incubator, where founders and teams who are already working on an idea come for guidance and support.

Is travel part of the program?

Not really.

Does it have a global perspective and if so, how?

Yes, ASU has long had a strong global perspective and this program furthers that philosophy. Startups can be working on local, regional, national or international problems.

How does this program relate to the other ASU entrepreneurial activities such as Venture Devils etc?

ASU has many resources dedicated to helping develop successful entrepreneurs, as well as providing seed funding through competitions and other avenues. However, those are aimed at students of varying academic levels pursuing individual and/or team concepts. This is a formal multi-disciplinary MS degree that teaches critical thinking skills to make connections, synthesize different perspectives, and acquire new knowledge -- all toward supporting the development of invaluable new solutions to existing problems. In addition, this is a venture-based learning experience where students will also learn the nuts and bolts of starting and managing a real business.

What was the impetus for the creation of this program? Who determined that there was a need for such a program and how?

There is a growing recognition within the business community that transdisciplinary knowledge and experience are keys to success in a rapidly changing world. Successful entrepreneurs and business leaders have been deeply involved in the development,  implementation and funding of this unique program. ASU has long had a focus on transdisciplinary learning and MS Innovation and Venture Development is a major step in the University’s commitment to that concept.

What types of opportunities will there be throughout the program for students to make connections with potential employers/partners after graduation?

Deep interaction with the business community, whether for-profit or non-profit, is an integral part of this program. Validated marketplace pain points will be sourced and vetted from industry partners, internal and external entrepreneurial ecosystems, faculty, donors, and friends of the University. Student ventures will be formed to address these identified “pain points”. One of our  donors commented that “for many students in the program this will be like an extended one year job interview”.

What types of jobs will graduates of the program likely do?

Graduates from transdisciplinary programs that provide experience in the innovation process frequently get jobs where the mandate is to lead change; launch new products or divisions, lead the ‘Innovation lab’ or other key roles in organizations that are disrupting the status quo.

Because MSIVD graduates define their own ventures, they tend to work at things they love, and bring additional ability to innovate in those fields, to actually enhance and expand them. MSIVD helps you think about your own potential in a fresh, bigger way, then go out into the world prepared to make big things happen.

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ASU Resources Available to MSIVD Students

  • Entrepreneurship + Innovation
    Entrepreneurship + Innovation at Arizona State University connects you to the information, resources and people that can help you turn your ideas into reality.
    Visit Website
  • ASU SkySong Innovations
    Skysong Innovations was established in 2003 as an Arizona Limited Liability company, formerly known as AzTE. To date they have launched 144 startups, created more than 1,100 local jobs and generated over $108 million in state revenue.
    Visit Website
  • A Biomimicry of the Desert Southwest
    Join world-renowned biomimicry leader Dayna Baumeister for an intensive week-long class in the Chiricahua Mountains of southeastern Arizona.
    Visit Website