“A healthcare startup is not about executing a series of knowns. Most startups are facing a series of unknowns- unknown customer segments, unknown markets, unknown customer needs, unknown product feature set, etc.” – Steve Blank

“The Edge Program helps the first-time entrepreneurial team by reducing the number of unknown unknowns and boost the likelihood of success” – George Tolomiczenko, PhD

The HTE@USC Edge Program is an entrepreneurial boot camp for teams including USC students and clinicians. Through experiential learning activities that identify needs and match these with customers, teams will boost their chances of successfully commercializing their technologies. After the month of Edge program activities this June, participants will have a clear go/no go decision regarding the commercial viability their idea for a healthcare product or service. By completing the program, teams are also positioned well to compete in USC’s growing number of prize competitions for entrepreneurial teams, to apply for NSF I-Corps funding, or to seek funding from other external sources.

Snacks will be provided during the sessions (these are earned lunches since there is prep work for each session!)

HTE@USC 06/06/2016 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM Health Science Campus – Hastings Auditorium

HTE@USC 06/13/2015 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM Health Science Campus – Hastings Auditorium

HTE@USC 06/20/2015 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM Health Science Campus – NCT Aresty LG503

HTE@USC 06/27/2015 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM Health Science Campus – NCT Aresty LG503

Program Description

This course is based on the successful National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (“I-Corps”) methodology of linking university engineering with the marketplace. We will require teams to engage in “out-of-the-building” learning activities. Teams will need to present their preliminary project ideas starting during the first session. Absent team members can participate via an online technology (likely Bluejeans). Customer discovery and development activities will require your team to engage with a range of stakeholders in your journey taking your idea to the marketplace.


Expenses totaling up to $2000 will be available for reimbursing your team for costs associated with interview, customer development and prototyping associated with your participation in the HTE Edge Summer Program. Your team will learn how to conduct, distill, and analyze a minimum of 20 customer interviews. Progress will be tracked through a web-based application called LaunchPad Central that will continue to be available to you and your team after the end of the HTE Edge program.


Teams of two or more members can apply by preparing and submitting a preliminary team pitch deck outlining the need addressed by their proposed healthcare product or service. For more details about the format of your application, please contact Nadine Afari (nafari@usc.edu) by May 31st, 2016.

“Have we identified a problem a customer wants solved? Does our product solve these customer needs? If so, do we have a viable and profitable business model? Have we learned enough to go out and sell and discuss our solution? Answering these questions is the purpose of the first step in the Customer Development model, Customer Discovery” – Steve Blank