The USC MESH (Medicine, Engineering, Science and Humanities) Academy at the Keck School of Medicine co-sponsored the Larta Institute’s National Institutes of Health (NIH) Commercialization Accelerator Program (CAP) Commercialization Training Workshop (CTW), which took place on Wednesday, October 24, 2018 and Thursday, October 25, 2018 at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. The workshop, currently in its fifteenth year, has historically only been open to companies that are (1) funded by an NIH SBIR/STTR Phase II award and (2) accepted into the NIH CAP program. Through a special partnership with the Larta Institute, USC faculty, postdoctoral researches, and graduate students were given 30 seats at the invitation-only workshop.
Several MESH Academy staff members attended the workshop, including the MESH Academy Director, Steve Kay, as well as Vasiliki Anest, Amanda Mason, and Melissa Rodgers. In his opening remarks, Dr. Kay said “There has never been such a roar of success from the biomedical community Los Angeles as in the last several years. In order to scale our impact from academia to market, we need events like this from the Larta Institute, and we need the NIH CAP and SBIR mechanisms.”
On Wednesday, workshops included “America’s Next Top Approval” – Regulatory/Reimbursement Panel, “Real IP Protection of SBIR County” – Intellectual Property Panel, and “Who Wants to Partner with a Millionaire?” – Expanding Your Business through Partnership. “Extreme Makeover: SBIR Edition” – Putting Your Best Foot Forward & Marketing / Branding Workshop was held on Thursday. The rest of the two-day event included networking, an evening reception, a dinner, and one-on-one meetings between CAP companies and their advisers.
“Larta is a professional organization that delivered high quality speakers, panelists, and moderators contributing to a robust discussion and providing answers to the burning questions early entrepreneurs need answered.” said Vasiliki Anest, Senior Director of Business Development and Industry Relations at USC MESH and one of the leads in securing the Larta-MESH collaboration. “We look forward to growing this partnership over time to include not only key events like this one, but also workshops and support for USC entrepreneurs, especially those interested in the NIH SBIR/STTR and other commercialization grant mechanisms.”