Back to school: 4 Southern California college incubators you should know

Over the past decade, local schools have started adding a new component for students to take advantage of: the business incubator. We took a look at a few colleges in the LA area with innovative tech incubators.

Written by John Siegel
Published on Jul. 14, 2016
Back to school: 4 Southern California college incubators you should know

Los Angeles boasts a number of colleges celebrated on a national level for their ability to attract and grow talented individuals. For years though, entrepreneurial programs lacked the ability to offer practical business experience for students, especially in the age of the startup. 

But over the past decade, local schools have started adding a new component for students to take advantage of: the business incubator. We took a look at a few colleges in the LA area with innovative tech incubators.

 

USC Incubator - University of Southern California

Supported by the Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at USC’s Marshall School of Business, the USC Incubator is run by startup incubator veteran and USC Adjunct Professor Paul Orlando. The program helps student and alumni entrepreneurs through a combination of experiential education, mentorship and communal atmosphere. The program is remarkably inclusive, with any team including one or more USC students, alumni or faculty/staff members eligible to apply. 

 

Anderson Venture Accelerator - University of California, Los Angeles

UCLA's campus is lauded for being one of the most diverse in the country, and the number of programs the university offers has evolved to reflect that, boasting world-class schools of business, law, engineering and medicine. Because of the amount of talent these schools attract, and because of the potential for innovation in a number of fields, UCLA's Anderson School of Management, in coordination with the school's library, launched the Anderson Venture Accelerator. Named after John E. Anderson, a billionaire entrepreneur and sole shareholder of Topa Equities, Ltd., the accelerator serves as an incubator for UCLA's early-stage startups.

 

The Portal - University of California, Irvine

Irvine's rich history in technological innovation has extended to the local school. UC Irvine is home to The Portal, a center that offers technical and entrepreneurial guidance for students looking to work in tech. The Portal provides students with a paid internship program that offers members opportunities to work with local companies, build business and technical skills and interact with teams of like-minded individuals in a casual startup environment. Staffed by industry professionals, as well as students from UC Irvine and the Laguna College of Art and Design, The Portal is a non-profit initiative founded by the Beall Family Foundation and K5 Ventures.

Designed to prepare students for the startup world, the program offers students everything from web and app development to accounting advice. The Portal's blend of hands-on training and actual, on-job experience make it a truly unique incubator.

 

Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator @ CSUN - California State University, Northridge

Despite its size and location, the San Fernando Valley is very much underappreciated for its diversity and talent. Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator @ CSUN is a collaboration between the nonprofit cleantech incubator and California State University, Northridge (CSUN). The incubator not only serves students on campus, but the San Fernando Valley as well. The school is known for having respected engineering and computer sciences colleges, and the arrangement between LACI and CSUN hopes to empower students to grow the Valley's tech scene. 

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