Make it Wearable: Lester Center To Create Curriculum for Intel Challenge

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich wowed attendees last month at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas with his announcement of the $1.3 million Make It Wearable Challenge.

The global, year-long challenge will call upon the smartest and most creative minds around the world to develop startups to push the limits of wearable devices and ubiquitous computing in areas such as meaningful usages, aesthetics, battery life, security, and privacy.

Building on a longtime relationship with the Haas School's Lester Center for Entrepreneurship, Intel also announced a new partnership to build an online curriculum for the top 10 finalists in the Make It Wearable Challenge. Lester Center Executive Andre Marquis will lead Berkeley-Haas instructors in guiding wearable device startup teams through a multi-month intensive online accelerator that will start in August and culminate in November with the 10 finalists spending a week at UC Berkeley.

The curriculum will build on Haas' work leading a multimillion innovation program for the National Science Foundation (NSF). Haas Lecturer and serial entrepreneur Steve Blank, an architect of the NSF Innovation Corps curriculum, will be among the faculty offering training sessions as part of the Make It Wearable initiative with Intel.

“This educational and entrepreneurial initiative brings together so much of what is great here at Berkeley-Haas: lean startups, open innovation, and design thinking just to start," says Marquis. "We are excited to partner again with Intel to inspire and train the next generation of entrepreneurs and help them push the limits of what is possible.”

The Lester Center has been hosting the Intel Global Challenge at UC Berkeley every fall since 2005 in collaboration with the Intel Foundation. The challenge brings together the best business, science, and engineering students to network, learn from leading entrepreneurship educators, and compete for $100,000 in prizes by pitching their businesses to prominent Silicon Valley investors.

Intel will manage the selection process for its Make It Wearable Challenge, while Haas will host and build the curriculum for the accelerator program.

Registration begins today (Feb. 24) for the Make It Wearable Challenge’s Visionary Track, which features five rounds with start dates and judging staggered throughout the year and $5,000 prizes. Registration will open in summer 2014 for a Development Track, which will feature three rounds to select the 10 finalists who will participate in the accelerator curriculum created by the Lester Center.

For more information and to sign up for updates, visit the Intel Make It Wearable Challenge website at makeit.intel.com.

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