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FIN/ES 329 & 629: Financing Technology Commercialization – A Venture Capital Hands-on Challenge

David Brophy, Professor of Finance and Director, The UM Center for Venture Capital and Private Equity Finance


What’s the Value for you as a UM Master’s or PhD Student?

  • Deliverable: Experience hands-on the venture capital raising challenge in a practicum setting in Fall Term as part of a mentored team of grad and undergrad students from Ross and other UM units, to prepare and pitch an emerging growth company to venture capitalists who are focused on our class.


  • Process: Meet and engage at Ross, each Wednesday, 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm,  with regional and national entrepreneurial and venture capital investment professionals as you help build market differentiation and a venture capital investment thesis for your matched company.


  • Take-Away: You will learn how to fund your technology-based startup company! Participating in the venture capital investment acquisition process experientially you will engage with management, mentors, team members and venture capitalists while preparing and pitching your matched company to VC investors.  You will become part of a unique group of Ross and UM alumni entrepreneurs and investors who have taken this course over its 12 year history and who serve as collaborators, mentors and adjunct mentors, accessible to you as current class members.

How to Enroll?

  • Ross Students: enroll immediately via Wolverine Access

  • Students From Other UM Units: immediately send your CV to Prof. David Brophy (djbrophy@umich.edu) and request his permission to enroll. Upon receiving an enrollment permission notice from Ross Academic Services, enroll at once via Wolverine Access.


When to Enroll?  To nail down a seat in the course, submit your bid immediately, to begin the first cycle of “Venture Capital-Ready Boot Camp” on- line preparation for the course.

In our class, you and your student team will match up with an early-stage growth company located in Michigan that seeks a new set of eyes, minds and hands to help it raise venture capital to fund its growth. Your student team, with two serial entrepreneurs as team mentors, and a national platform of adjunct mentors, will work closely together to form and execute a plan to get your company funded by real angels and venture capitalists to whom you will pitch at term’s end.

Now in its 12th year, our program team of company founders, mentors, and VC investors brings students a unique challenge that leads to your next phase of personal growth.

By joining us you will acquire and learn to apply the ability to:

  • Tell your company’s story to determine its valuation

  • Conduct due diligence

  • Make key strategic decisions

  • Develop a financial plan

  • Most importantly, to build and present an investor pitch

  • Interact with two experienced mentors and adjunct mentors on a national platform with over 1,000 cumulative years of venture experience.

These are marketable skills in whatever career path you choose. The venture capital-raising process you will learn experientially in this applied course will be an asset to you in whatever direction your business career takes.

Are you ready to become an entrepreneurial innovator?  a fundable founder? a rainmaking investor? Join FIN/ES 329 629 and learn how to become any and all of these.