Student Industry Fellows Program

Fellows PolygonThe Student Industry Fellows Program (SIFP) cultivates innovation competencies among UGA graduate and undergraduate students and fosters mutually beneficial industry partnerships. Through this process, UGA plays a vital role in building the talent of today and empowering them to solve tomorrow’s challenges.

The UGA Innovation District is part of UGA’s unique ecosystem of talent, creativity, and infrastructure that brings students from a range of disciplines together to turn ideas into inventions, startup companies, and solutions to some of the world’s grand challenges. The SIFP cultivates innovation competencies among UGA graduate and undergraduate students and fosters mutually beneficial partnerships with industry stakeholders, start-ups, and other organizations which are seeking to solve emergent and pressing challenges through unique, cross-disciplinary courses and experiences.

Innovation Catylist & Design

Open to undergraduate and graduate students in any discipline, this one semester course provides students with foundational training in the theory and practice of innovation, including competencies such as design thinking, project management, analytics, or business strategies. This course will also serve as a cross-disciplinary pipeline of students into the Industry Project Management experiences.

Industry Project Management

Open to selected, successful graduates of the “Innovation Leadership & Design” course, this program places students in cross-disciplinary teams that work on real-world projects identified by industry-partners, where they apply and sharpen their innovation abilities and competencies.

Students selected as fellows will receive targeted training and support, serve as campus ambassadors for UGA’s innovation ecosystem, and have the opportunity work on hands-on projects with industry partners and student colleagues from a wide range of disciplinary backgrounds. Up to 25 student applicants will be selected annually to enter the SIFP program, which will require one semester of training/preparatory coursework and one or more semesters of Innovation District service and team-based project work. Student Fellows receive $750 for each semester as they:

  • Lead industry project teams (1-2 per semester) and complete projects on time and to a high degree of quality/accuracy. 
  • Serve as Innovation District ambassadors, staffing programs and events, hosting speakers or visitors as needed, and periodically planning programs or events which are intended to enhance the innovation ecosystem at UGA.


Strategic Objectives

  1. Expand experiential learning in the innovation and entrepreneurship space.
  2. Broaden and deepen industry collaboratrion in the research and commercialization activities of the University.

Expanded Outcomes (FY20-25)

  1. 200 students with innovation and entrepreneurship skills/behaviors/mindsets through the "Innovation Catalyst & Design" course.
  2. 75 Industry Fellows complete the SIFP serving on industry-centered projects and practicing innovation and entrepreneurship on real-world, industry projects.
  3. 60 Projects completed and challenges solved for industry partners benefiting industry and Georgian communities.