Aside from curriculum and formal programs, the Dingman Center is also home to many entrepreneurship resources for students, staff and alumni as well as regional entrepreneurs.
UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND ORGANIZATIONS
Academy for Innovation & Entrepreneurship
The Academy’s mission is to bring innovation and entrepreneurship to all 35,000+ UMD students by collaborating with all 12 schools and colleges.
Do Good Institute
The Do Good Institute serves as the catalyst to transform the University of Maryland into the nation’s first Do Good campus, where students are inspired to take action and spur innovations and solutions that tackle today’s social issues. The Institute, housed in the School of Public Policy, provides opportunities for all University of Maryland students to immerse themselves with and address significant social issues through hands-on learning opportunities.
Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech)
The Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech) is a national leader in entrepreneurship and innovation education and venture creation and is a pioneer in building successful university-company partnerships.
Maryland Momentum Fund
The $10 million University System of Maryland (USM) Maryland Momentum Fund provides early stage seed investment funding for promising technology ventures that come out of any of the 12 constituent USM institutions, its research parks, and its students, faculty, or graduates.
Office of Technology Commercialization
The University of Maryland created the Office of Technology Commercialization in December 1986 to provide expert guidance, support, and assistance in safeguarding intellectual property, encouraging research, facilitating technological transfer, and promoting collaborative research and development agreements with industrial sponsors.
Startup Shell is a student-run coworking space and incubator at the University of Maryland. They foster entrepreneurship through collaboration.
Terp Entrepreneur Network (TEN)
The Alumni Association's first industry network is the Terp Entrepreneur Network! TEN is a platform for entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, aspiring entrepreneurs and seasoned professionals to network, share expertise and enjoy exclusive experiences.
UM Ventures is a joint initiative of the MPowering the State Program, bringing the University of Maryland, Baltimore and University of Maryland, College Park together to commercialize discoveries, and create economic impact by engaging partners in industry and social ventures. By encouraging our students and faculty, providing expert advice and business services, more discoveries will reach the market. By engaging directly with external partners we will bring new investment, expanded markets and more startup ventures.
STATE OF MARYLAND ORGANIZATIONS
Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED)
Are you a new or existing business looking for help to retain workers or expand, or branch out internationally? Are you a company considering Maryland as a location? The Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED) is here to help.
Maryland Technology Development Corporation (Maryland TEDCO)
TEDCO was created by the Maryland State Legislature in 1998 to facilitate the transfer and commercialization of technology from Maryland’s research universities and federal labs into the marketplace and to assist in the creation and growth of technology-based businesses in all regions of the State.
Maryland Central Business Licensing and Registration Portal
The new Maryland Central Business Licensing and Registration Portal offers a step-by-step process to register your business online from one easy-to-use website.
Maryland Small Business Development Center
SBDC links private enterprise, government, higher education and local economic development organizations to provide high-quality training, confidential consulting and market and industry research to Maryland’s small businesses.
REGIONAL AND NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
Ashoka U advocates for all colleges and universities to embrace changemaking, both as an educational framework and as a strategy for institutional change. Since 2008, they have enabled the strategic implementation of changemaker education for 500+ university and college campuses across 50 countries, including University of Maryland.
Established in 2012, Betamore is an award-winning coworking space, incubator and campus for technology and entrepreneurship.
Bethesda Green accelerates the sustainable economy locally with a focus on innovation through the Be Green Hub, on impact through the Be Impact Initiative, and through our Community Engagement.
Black Girl Ventures
The Black Girl Ventures Foundation is dedicated to offering comprehensive education and advisory services that outline a road map for the growth and success of minority and/or veteran women entrepreneurs.
The Big Idea CONNECTpreneur Forum is a Community of over 8000 CEOs, Entrepreneurs, VCs and angels, CXOs and other business leaders in the Mid-Atlantic Region. Each bi-monthly CONNECTpreneur Forum mashes up 500+ top founders, investors and business leaders for a morning breakfast event featuring awesome networking, newsmaking speakers, and a showcase of exciting early stage companies.
Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers (GCEC)
Founded in 1997, GCEC is the key junction for university-based entrepreneurship centers across the U.S. to collaborate, communicate, and jointly advance excellence in entrepreneurship through the unique role and position of the centers in the academic and business communities. The University of Maryland, College Park is one of the founding members.
For nearly two decades, the ETC has fostered a transformative community of tech-savvy, innovative, entrepreneurial people looking for creative collaboration to accelerate their growth potential and make a powerful economic impact on the City of Baltimore and beyond.
The Kauffman Foundation
Kauffman Foundation, one of the largest private foundations in the United States, focuses on education and entrepreneurship with the goal of fostering a society of economically independent individuals who are engaged citizens in their communities.
Halcyon Incubator equips early-stage social entrepreneurs with the support they need to transform audacious ideas into scalable and sustainable ventures, and change the world.
Hera Hub is the first international female-focused coworking space & business accelerator. Our platform supports members through education, mentoring, and collaboration, while the office environment gives them access to professional, productive space where they can grow a prosperous business, built on the foundation of a powerful community.
Mid-Atlantic Venture Association (MAVA)
MAVA is a membership association in the mid-Atlantic region serving the needs of the full ecosystem of investments ranging from angel to later stage.
SEED Spot supports ecosystem builders in schools and communities to create a robust pipeline of impact-driven entrepreneurs. Their programs surround adult and youth entrepreneurs with the access to resources, mentors, business fundamentals, capital sources, and community partners they need to succeed.
WeWork provides shared office space in major cities throughout the U.S., including College Park and Washington D.C.
Vinetta is a Capital Platform that sources, funds and supports the worlds most promising female founders, providing great outcomes for their startups and superior returns.
Funding Sources for UMD Students
Currently enrolled and matriculating student entrepreneurs are eligible to participate in our Terp Startup Accelerator, where they receive a stipend of up to $5,000 to work on their business for eight weeks over the summer. Additionally, student entrepreneurs who advance in our Pitch Dingman Competition may compete for a share of $30,000 in total funding.
Through generous gifts from Carly Fiorina and Kevin Plank, the Dingman Center has the ability to provide ad-hoc seed funding for University of Maryland startups. This funding can be in addition to any grants received through Fearless Founders funding. Grants range from $250-$1000. Funding typically goes towards equipment purchases, website hosting, rapid prototyping, incorporation fees or any other costs that you see a barrier to getting an idea to market. This funding is given in the form of non-dilutive grants. All we ask is that you think of us when you take your company public. If you are interested in receiving funding, read the requirements and fill out an application form.
The University Sustainability Fund provides funding for projects that promote environmental sustainability, and positively impact and enhance the student experience at UMD. The Fund will allocate funds to projects that increase the use of renewable energy on campus and/or in the local community, increase the energy efficiency of our facilities, reduce the amount of waste created and material resources used on campus, encourage sustainable behaviors, and integrate sustainability into teaching, research, and service at UMD.
The Terp Toolkit series on the Dingman Center blog provides practical tips for anyone interested in pursuing an entrepreneurial venture. Click any of the posts below to learn more.
The Dingman Center has compiled a list of suggested readings that we often recommend to our network.
Support the Dingman Center
Gifts to the Dingman Center primarily go toward activities, including helping students build their ventures, creating experiential learning opportunities and providing entrepreneurs with access to capital. They also provide financial support for programming, seed funding and events including Pitch Dingman Competition.
Thank you to our sponsors!
Berenato & White
Miles & Stockbridge
Off Campus Parking
About the Inner Circle
Since its founding in 1986, the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship has relied on corporate and individual gifts to support its various programs, services, and events. Known as the Inner Circle, the development campaign solicits annual fund contributions, program underwriting, and event sponsorship. The Inner Circle brings together successful alumni, entrepreneurs and business leaders who help to navigate the future of the Dingman Center, the Robert H. Smith School of Business, and entrepreneurship in our region. All funds raised through the Inner Circle provide direct support for programs, services and student scholarships.
FY'20 HONOR ROLL OF DONORS
Whether it is time, talent or treasure, the Dingman Center network gives back in immeasurable ways.
Much of this support goes to seeding student-run startups. In 2020, we distributed over $155,000 in non-dilutive seed funding to student entrepreneurs participating in our programs. Thank you to our supporters for your generosity. The list below represents gifts received from July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020.
Mr. Kurt R. Aarsand and Mrs. Jeanne Aarsand
Mr. Maurice Boissiere, Jr. ’89
Mr. William J. Boyle ’81
Mr. Alexander F. Castelli
Mr. Jason I. Cohen ’96
Mr. Christopher E. Dax
Mr. Ishdeep S. Dugal ’05 and Mrs. Priya A. Dugal ’05
Stephen B. Ferber ’90, Esq. and Mrs. Melissa Ferber ’89
Mrs. Elana R. Fine ’97
Fishlinger Family Foundation
Mr. Matthew J. Fishlinger ’07 and Mrs. Meaghan Fishlinger
Mr. William J. Fishlinger ’71
Jon M. Forster ’86, Esq. and
Mrs. Andrea S. Forster
Mr. Harry L. Geller ’81
Mr. Jeffrey S. Grinspoon ’90, MBA ’95
Ms. Sara E. Herald, MBA ’11
Mr. Robert G. Hisaoka ’79
Ms. Tricia D. Homer
Mr. Kenneth R. Jones ’97 and Mrs. Min Hyung Jones
Mrs. Claire D. Knight ’53
Dr. Rudolph P. Lamone
Mr. Jacob Muss ’17
Mrs. Ellen P. Myerberg, MBA ’76 and Dr. Nathan James Myerberg
Parsons Ventures, Inc.
Mr. Thomas B. Parsons ’93, MBA ’10
Mr. David Quattrone, MBA ’05 and Mrs. Robyn Quattrone
Ms. Brianna A. Queen ’19
Mr. Daniel C. Schwab
Mr. Michael J. Schwab and Mrs. Debbie L. Schwab
Ralph P. Sita, Jr. ’84, C.P.A.
Mrs. Kathryn K. Stewart
Mr. Keith B. Sullivan ’82 and Ms. Allison Fette Sullivan
Mr. Benjamin D. Taragin ’19
Mr. Charles J. Thomas ’72 and Mrs. Karen U. Thomas
Ms. Mary Blair Vail
Mr. David K. Wagstaff ’90
Mrs. Constance K. Weaver ’75 and Mr. David H. Weaver
Our Community Engagement Philosophy
At the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship, we discover, equip, connect and celebrate entrepreneurs. A key part of this mission is keeping our vast community of alumni and regional entrepreneurs engaged in our programs and initiatives. This involvement by our larger community is key to the success of the Dingman Center, and we truly appreciate the willingness of our community who offer their time to participate in these various programs, helping to fulfill the mission of the Dingman Center. As an alumnus, regional entrepreneur, or business professional, here are some of the ways you can participate in our programs.
Please read these roles carefully to explore the engagement opportunities, and then complete the Volunteer Intake Form to provide some background information, as well as select opportunities where you would potentially like to participate and become involved (time commitment hours are approximate).
Note: All volunteer opportunities are filled based on availability, fit and program needs.
Dingman Fridays Guest Advisor:
Time Commitment: 4 Hours (one time)
Your role: As a Dingman Fridays Guest Advisor, you will be able to partner with a Dingman Center Entrepreneur-in-Residence and participate in a Pitch Dingman walk-in advising sessions. Student entrepreneurs will pitch you their startup idea then you can provide your insights and past experience to coach the students and provide next steps.
Fearless Founders Mentor:
Time Commitment: 1 hour monthly (for the duration of the semester)
Your role: In both the Idea Shell and Hatch stages of the Fearless Founders program, we assign each student entrepreneur with a mentor. We will provide you the necessary training with our Mentor Guide and provide several resources to understand the lean Launchpad methodologies we teach in Fearless Founders. We also recommend the Udacity course on the Lean Startup. Following training, mentors will be ready to provide insight to students based on past experience in order to help them stay on track through the Fearless Founders program.
Time Commitment: 3 hours (one time)
Your role: Whether it is during the Fearless Founders course, Entrepreneurship Connector Club, Speaker Series, or Keynote at the Pitch Dingman Competition, we are seeking out entrepreneurs and business professionals to provide speeches, presentations, and lectures on a wide variety of topics. You will highlight your area of expertise on the Volunteer Intake Form so that we can reach out to you for the right speaking engagement.
Time Commitment: 3 hours (one time)
Your Role: On several occasions, we hold panels on various topics surrounding entrepreneurship, including but not limited to pivoting, building a great team, lean startup and several other topics. We are seeking business professionals and experts to join these panel discussions and provide insight to undergraduate and graduate students based on your experience.
Time Commitment: 3 hours (one time)
Your Role: We have the Pitch Dingman Competition, Fearless Founders Grant Presentations, and several other events within our undergraduate and graduate programs compete for funding. We request the assistance of entrepreneurs and business professionals in our community to help make a non-biased decision and bring a fresh perspective when evaluating student entrepreneurs pitching their ideas for seed funding.
Dingman Center Angel Member:
Time Commitment: 3 hours monthly (for the duration of the academic year; membership fee applies)
Your role: In addition to supporting student and alumni entrepreneurs, the Dingman Center also screens regional startups who are seeking angel investment funds. The Dingman Center Angels group is our channel for the startups to pitch their ideas for funding. As a Dingman Center Angel, you will be able to actively screen investment deals, network with 40+ DCA members, and collaborate on deals to fund and support regional startups.
Your next step? Complete the Volunteer Intake Form.
Within our community of entrepreneurs and business professionals, we understand that different volunteers desire varying levels of participation at the Dingman Center. Below we have defined those levels of involvement within our engaged community:
If you participate in one or two events per semester, you are a Dingman Advisor. In this capacity, you have shown interest in getting involved, and are starting to get a feel for the programs and initiatives we offer to students and regional startups.
Dingman Visiting Entrepreneur:
If you participate in three or more of our programs per semester, you are becoming a Dingman Visiting Entrepreneur. In this capacity, you are getting involved with more programs on a continuous basis, and are working with student entrepreneurs not only at the center but you are also making time available to guide students outside of the defined Dingman Center programs and initiatives in on-site or remote conversations with students. This is the next step in the pipeline to becoming an Entrepreneur in Residence.
Dingman Entrepreneur in Residence (Invite Only):
When you become an Entrepreneur in Residence (EIR), you are interacting with the Dingman Center on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Our Dingman EIRs provide time and treasure to support the center and lead the effort in expanding the reach of our mission to discover, equip, connect and celebrate entrepreneurs. You will be involved in an EIR call at the beginning and end of the semester to discuss ideas and thoughts on the current state of the Dingman Center programs, and discuss opportunities for enhancing the programs for the semesters ahead.