The Venture Mentoring Service (VMS) program at MD Anderson Cancer Center is an initiative in collaboration with the University of Texas System Office of Innovation and Strategic Investment (OISI) that provides University of Texas (UT) innovators and entrepreneurs access to experienced mentors in order to accelerate and support commercialization and entrepreneurship in a scalable manner.
The program launched in 2017 on the belief that a venture is far more likely to thrive when an entrepreneur with an idea can draw on the advice and guidance of a group of mentors with proven skill and experience. Through active support of entrepreneurs, VMS contributes to the entrepreneurship education strengthening University of Texas institutions role as leaders in innovation.
VMS is a sister program of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Venture Mentoring Service, the methodology used at MIT is being replicated at MD Anderson in an effort to support academic ventures.
Frequently Asked Questions
Mentors are all volunteers, extremely experienced, and want to help other rising entrepreneurs be successful. A group of three business mentors will be assigned to every venture.
Our “Guiding Principles” and professional operations create a safe environment for mentors, entrepreneurs, and participating institutions.
Ventures that have a University of Texas relationship (UT students, faculty, alumni, company collaborations with UT researchers, etc.)
No, mentors are all volunteers and are happy to help
All mentors and ventures sign a "Shared Values" document creating a conflict-free, confidential, and safe environment for mentors and entrepreneurs
Your venture will be discussed in a review panel and a final decision will be communicated to your team via email
Mentor applications are not open to the public and only by referral. If you would like to learn more and apply to be a mentor please contact Alejandro Tortoriello at firstname.lastname@example.org
Strategic Industry Ventures
Are you an experienced business professional in the Texas region interested in mentoring academic ventures?
Apply to become a VMS Houston mentor for an opportunity to provide team-based mentoring to support the advancement of innovative technologies through real-world guidance and connectivity conducted in a confidential and conflict-free manner.