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14 December, 2020 - 10:48 By Tony Quested

Cambridge turns light bulb moments into lightning storm

A Cambridge University programme created to nurture academic brilliance has been fine-tuned to give businesses and research organisations their best shot at turning bleeding edge innovation into commercial gold.

The Impulse Programme is tipped to inspire fresh generations of science and technology entrepreneurs and – as a bonus – boasts a 40 per cent intake of women in the latest entrepreneurial cohort.

Open to businesses around the world, Impulse provides participants with high class mentoring from some of the most influential role models in the Cambridge ecosystem. 

They include Dr Hermann Hauser, Prof Sir Mark Welland, Dr David Cleevely, Jamie Urquhart, Richard Green, Prof Sir Richard Friend, Prof Chris Lowe, Steve Barlow, Phil O’Donovan, Julie Barnes, Anne Dobrée, Deborah Harland and Abel Ureta-Vidal.

As well as sharing access to mentor networks, participants are also plugged in to an extensive network of successful alumni, including Riverlane, Sorex Sensors, Celsius Health, Waterscope and PolyProx Therapeutics – as well as VCs and business angels, experts in IP and law and industry partners.

The Henry Royce Institute, the UK's National Institute for advanced materials research and Innovation, and the National Physical Laboratory, the UK’s national Metrology Institute, are two organisations already choosing to benefit from what the programme has to offer to their brightest prospects.

David Stanley, training & skills manager at the Henry Royce Institute for advanced materials says: “Impulse is an excellent, well-structured programme, which takes participants through all the different aspects of setting up a business – testing the idea and, perhaps more importantly, testing the individual.

“What makes this programme so unique is, undeniably, the ethos around Cambridge, which is a very special place. Not only is the quality of the mentoring outstanding but the dedication of the people doing the coaching is superlative. The mentors are people who have been there and done it; many have set up their own business and many are very well-known names.

“The programme fits very well with our own remit to support and encourage entrepreneurial skills within the advanced materials sector and upskill our new entries into the skills pipeline. We don’t want good ideas in material science to go to waste because young people haven’t had the chance to express themselves or even explore the idea of setting up their own business. Many of them have great ideas but it’s a different matter actually turning those ideas into a business.” 

Yupar Myint, Impulse’s head of programme added: “Impulse is an established action-learning programme of global significance, enabling the development of high-potential technology innovation into a commercial proposition for individuals and organisations.

“Impulse is where chance encounters happen from Cambridge’s unique cluster of entrepreneurial minds and we foster collaborations for innovators and entrepreneurs from a variety of countries, industries, disciplines and ethnics.”

The 12-week Impulse Programme kicks off with the first of three intensive modules on the April 20, 2021. If your organisation would like to partner with the programme, email Yupar Myint at: impulse [at] maxwell.cam.ac.uk. Individual applications can be submitted by visiting the Impulse Programme website – https://www.maxwell.cam.ac.uk/programmes/impulse-programme

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