Researchers create opportunities for entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurs in the medical field are encouraged to attend a holiday networking social event hosted by the Mid-South LifeSciTN Academic Alliance Chapter on December 11 at Memphis Bioworks.
The new chapter, which is supported by Memphis Bioworks, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC), the University of Memphis and Rhodes College, consists of graduate students and postdoctoral researchers interested in creating opportunities for entrepreneurship, career development and knowledge sharing with the goal of creating a more robust life science industry network.
"There seems to be a high curiosity for entrepreneurial ventures among millennials (even if they may never go that route), and in many ways our guest speakers offer information that can fill that need," says Chad Riggs, St. Jude Technology Licensing Marketing Associate and head of the alliance, which also serves to connect people from different areas and to groups like Bioworks and StartCo. 
Riggs expects to see a wide variety of fledgling medical start-ups, such as a dentist with a great new business idea, a doctor that wants to make a device, or a lawyer or start-up business guru that can make those ideas or others shine.
"It's possible a member could be a researcher or physician with an idea, but they may want to flesh it out or pass it off to a biomedical engineer or someone with business or legal expertise. This informal network can facilitate that," he says.
The special holiday event is sponsored by the Fed-Ex Institute's Crews Center for Entrepreneurship and Launch Tennessee, and those interested in attending must register here.
On January 8 at the Trolley Stop Market the alliance will feature Jan Bouten from the Innova Memphis venture capital group, and on February 12 (also at Trolley Stop Market) the special guest will be Rob Clark from St. Jude's Department of Public Policy & Government Affairs.
Life Science Tennessee is a statewide, nonprofit, member organization with a mission of advancing and growing the life science industry in Tennessee through advocacy, partnerships and alignment with economic and workforce development.

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Michael Waddell is a native Memphian who returned to Memphis several years ago after working for nearly a decade in San Diego and St. Petersburg, Fla., as a writer, editor and graphic designer. His work over the past few years has been featured in The Memphis Daily News, Memphis Bioworks Magazine, Memphis Crossroads, the New York Daily News and the New York Post. Contact Michael.