Innovation & Entrepreneurship Programs & Community Engagement

The Innovation & Entrepreneurship Programs at San Francisco State University (I&E @ SFSU) is housed in the Lam Family College of Business, but offers university-wide programming. We believe that our students and extended community fundamentally have the creativity, insight, and spirit to positively affect the world around them. Our mission is to foster an ecosystem that encourages and enables thoughtful innovation, and to facilitate and enable successful entrepreneurship across the entire University.  At its core, I&E @ SFSU exists to find, nurture, and maximize the viability of student innovation and entrepreneurship.

I&E @ SFSU continues its mission through the development and ongoing delivery of programming designed for current students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members. Programs are designed to provide resources, mentorship, networking and opportunity to those that otherwise may not find access through traditional means. 

Financial support for I&E @ SFSU events, symposia, competitions, the IncuGator, among other programs, is supported in part by the Lam-Larsen Fund for Global Innovation and MUFG Union Bank Foundation.

If you have questions, please reach out to us.

Upcoming Events

Program Components

The Minor in Entrepreneurship is an 18-unit (6 courses) program designed to provide a streamlined business education specifically for students looking to start a small business or start-up. The program is made for non-business majors that are looking to explore ways to commercialize or build a business around their major course of study. 

Find out more about the minor in the University Bulletin listing.

Launched in Fall 2023, the Innovation Hub (The HUB) is a 1,700 square foot co-working and mixed use space for students, faculty, and SFSU alumni to network, ideate, meet, relax and work. The HUB includes a convenience MakerSpace, bookable office space, printing resources, and open communal and ideating space.

Stop by Humanities Building Room 125 to check out our progress, meet like-minded Gators, and maybe get a little work on your startup done!

Business Consultation Hours

We offer free, open consultation hours for students, staff, faculty, alumni, and the general community. If you have question, want to bounce ideas off someone, or just want to meet some like-minded innovators and entrepreneurs, we welcome you to drop by for open hours. Use the hours to get some work done, or to consult with an expert. Either way, no reservations are necessary, and there is always coffee and some of the best views of the campus.

  • Spring 2024 Schedule:

    • Mondays & Wednesdays 11:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. in the Innovation HUB (HUM125)
    • Closed March 20, 25 & 27 - Spring Break


Legal Consultation Hours 

We offer free, open legal consultation hours on business and business formation topics for students, staff, and faculty. If you have questions related to a start-up, small business, intellectual property, etc. we can help you to understand the options and legal frameworks that are involved. Consultation is first come first served, but reserving an appointment is highly recommended. Please schedule an appointment here. All appointments are held in HUM125a.


Technical Consultation Hours 

We offer free, open, in-person technical consultation for startups. If you have an idea for a web or mobile application, but don't know where to start, our technical consultants can point you in the right direction. Maybe your concept is a physical product or good, and you want help setting up your website and online store presence - we can help with that too. Come chat with one of our technical geniuses to have your technical questions answered. Topics can include:

  • Mobile application development
  • Full stack web development
  • Cloud-based computing
  • Online game development
  • Technical design documentation
  • Building a website and webstore

Consultation is first come first served, but reserving an appointment is highly recommended. All appointments are held in HUM125a. Email ie [@] for reservation requests.

  • Spring 2024 Schedule:

    • Wednesdays, 10:00 a.m.– 4:00 p.m.
    • Closed March 25 & 27 - Spring Break

Boot Camp is held once a semester during the academic year. Each boot camp is two full days (Friday and Saturday) of hands-on workshops designed to get any SFSU student from small business idea to a working business pitch, web-front and ready to make your first sale. 

Boot camps are FREE for currently registered SFSU students. But because space is limited, you must fully attend both days of the boot camp. For more information, visit the program at Boot Camp.

The IncuGator -  The San Francisco State University IncuGator (SFSU Gator + Incubator) is a startup incubator designed to develop and accelerate the innovative ideas and entrepreneurial visions of SF State students of all majors and levels. IncuGator accepts approximately seven new concepts each academic year. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis until the annual cohort is full. 

Concept founders and their team will spend their time in the IncuGator:

  • building a prototype and/or minimally viable product (MVP)
  • testing and finding validation of proof of concept
  • identifying, speaking and working with potential customers or development partners
  • exploring business and revenue models
  • developing a pitch, and a pitch deck

Based on the concept progress and completion of development milestones, concepts will have access to seed funding to further their product development, market research and manufacturing goals. 

We are proud to host, sponsor or support multiple pitch competitions for the SFSU community. If your SFSU academic department or affiliated group is interested in collaborating to host a pitch competition, please reach out. The following is a list of pitch competitions that we host and/or participate in.

  • Innovation Pitch Competition is an annual business pitch competition, open to all concepts where the founder and/or co-founder is a current SF State student.

    • AY 23/24: Competition on April 12, 2024.
  • Lam Family College of Business Pitch Contest is an annual pitch contest open to current Lam Family College of Business (LFCoB) undergraduate and graduate students with an innovative business idea or a startup.

    • AY 23/24: Competition on March 15, 2024.
  • Computer Science Pitch Competition Launched in 2023, this is a business pitch competition created in collaboration with the Computer Science department and the SFSU chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM). Join the ACM Discord for more information.

    • AY 23/24: Competition March 22,2024.
  • CSU Startup Launch Competition is the California State University-wide pitch competition. SFSU will be sending two (2) teams to compete against 17 other CSU campuses.

    • AY 23/24: Competition on May 3, 2024. 

We know that creativity and entrepreneurship does not stop outside the boarders of campus or after graduation. As The City’s University, we look to facilitate the entrepreneurial dreams of our broader communities by sharing our expertise and resources through a variety of events, programs, and other activities, including:

High School Outreach

I&E @ SFSU is committed to fostering innovation and encouraging entrepreneurship in scalable, tradeable sectors.  We are looking to partner with high schools in the Northern California area that want to develop or grow STEM research and innovation focused programs, and are in need of resources.

Junior Sciences & Humanities Symposium

I&E @ SFSU is the Northern California Regional host of the Junior Sciences & Humanities Symposium (JSHS). JSHS is a national, high school STEM research competition, a program backed by the United States Tri-Services in an effort to develop domestic STEM talent. Each year, the JSHS Northern California region awards $4,500 in scholarships, and selects five (5) delegates to represent the Region at Nationals where student researchers are eligible for a college scholarship of up to $12,000. 

Initiative Leadership & Partners

Innovation & Entrepreneurship are collaborative endeavors that require interdisciplinary skills and collaboration. Our ability to provide resources, programming and opportunity to students is a testament to the passion and dedication of faculty, community, and alumni partners. Learn more about the Initiative leadership and partners here.

Program Sponsors

MUFG Union Bank Logo

MUFG Union Bank Foundation

The MUFG Union Bank Foundation, a nonprofit public benefit corporation, serves as an agent for charitable contributions made by MUFG Union Bank, N.A. Throughout its history, the Foundation has supported the bank's commitment to help meet the needs of the communities it serves.


Junior Sciences & Humanities Symposium

The JSHS Symposium is made possible through a grant from the National Science Teaching Association and Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP). Learn more about STEM opportunities through the Army Educational Outreach Program.