University of Maryland Baltimore County

Maryland New Venture Fellowship for Cybersecurity

Baltimore, MD

Venture Challenge

Federal Share: $594,190
Local Match: $729,350

The “Maryland New Venture Fellowship for Cybersecurity” (The Fellowship) will provide a scaffold upon which cybersecurity companies can be built across the Maryland region by creating synergistic teams of graduate student “Fellows”, entrepreneurial mentors, and faculty from Maryland universities. These teams will translate technologies developed to secure our information systems, utilities, infrastructure and supply chains. Bwtech@UMBC, the incubator of the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC), a majority minority institution, and the University System of Maryland propose this Fellowship program to the EDA Venture Challenge to create new companies in a diverse cohort that will secure the nation’s interests and create economic opportunities. Maryland is home to major US innovation centers in cyber and data science including the National Security Agency, Defense Information Systems Agency and USCYBERCOM. While Maryland also ranks first in the country for cyber education, its concentration of talent has yet to translate into the type of startup success seen in other tech hubs across the country. This can be attributed to the density of federal agencies and military facilities, and thus a lack of experienced entrepreneurial talent. The Fellowship will provide an entrepreneurial experience for select graduate level students to learn how to vet, start, and run a successful business. Each year, 10 teams will become at least 6-8 viable spinout companies from universities and government agencies with the goals of 40% underrepresented minority leadership, building a venture network of diversity and inclusion, creating investment opportunities, and creating over 100 jobs in 3 years.