TE 401 - Developing Breakthrough Projects

Course Description

This course is a project-based exploration with teams of students working together in a large innovation and entrepreneurial context. The purpose of the course is to encourage development of innovative, leadership, and entrepreneurial skill sets, including financing, marketing, sales, operations, business plans, and management.

There are two major sections of this experiential course: Faculty Entrepreneurial Fellows (FEF) project and student(s) own project course. This course is repeatable such that students can obtain up to 16 credit hours total.

  • For the FEF led course, students work with a Faculty member on his/her promising technology project to prove out the viability of their innovations. Based on the agreed upon expectations and extent of the project commitment, students can sign up for 1 to 4 credit hours for the semester. The agreement of course credit is decided upon prior to course enrollment.
  • For the student(s) own project led course, student(s) with a potential idea that he/she/they would like to explore must identify a faculty member to supervise the project. The faculty and student(s) agree upon the scope, deliverables, time commitment and number of credits hours (1 to 4) for the semester (by completing a Memo of Agreement) prior to course enrollment.

Students interested in signing up for TE 401 should contact T.C. Cole at for more information.

Want to reserve Innovator Design space in the Grainger lower level? Click here.

Additional Information

What Students have said after taking this class:

"I've had the opportunity to design my own research project relating to real-world application. The combination of theoretical research and a practical problem has given me the chance to see what the intersection of scientific innovation and entrepreneurship is like."

"I am now a more confident engineer that learned the importance of having initiative, taking the lead, and pursuing what I really want no matter what."

"What you put into it is what you get out of it. Be ready to adapt, because if one thing doesn't work, the next logical step may take you in an unexpected direction."

"Great opportunity to apply concepts I learned in class to real projects working in a multidisciplinary team."

"Through my experiences in this course, I see that innovation is a matter of understanding the fundamental science of a technological application, and seeking the appropriate resrouces and connections to establish its feasibility."

Fall 2019 schedule

Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401A66594LCD -    
Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401B67793LCD -    William Patterson
Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401CS70652LCD2 -  ARR Illini Center Jed L Taylor
Andrew Singer
Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401DT71027LCD1300 - 1450 T  211 Noble Hall Amanda K Henderson
Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401DTH72306LCD1530 - 1720 W  211 Noble Hall Amanda K Henderson
Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401DTS72305LCD1530 - 1720 W  211 Noble Hall Rachael Erin Dietkus
Danielle Ann Marie Hernandez
Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401F69697LCD -    Andrew Singer
Develop Breakthrough ProjectsTE401G69705LCD -    

Technology Entrepreneur Center

The Grainger College of Engineering

351 Coordinated Science Lab, MC-228
1308 W. Main Street
Urbana, IL 61801

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