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UCLA Anderson Launches New Accelerator

UCLA Anderson School of Management recently announced the launch of its Anderson Venture Accelerator. Courtesy photo

UCLA Anderson School of Management recently announced the launch of its Anderson Venture Accelerator. Courtesy photo

UCLA’s Anderson School of Management is getting a big-time entrepreneurial facelift. Anderson announced yesterday (January 25) the launch of the UCLA Anderson Venture Accelerator, a 10,000-square-foot space, taking up nearly the entirety of the ground level at Anderson’s Rosenfeld Library. The new space will serve as an incubator for Anderson students at the graduate and undergraduate level and the UCLA community as a whole.

“UCLA Anderson is delighted to see the realization of this exciting living lab to further enhance the UCLA entrepreneurial ecosystem,” UCLA Anderson Dean Judy Olian said in a statement. “The UCLA Anderson Venture Accelerator offers students and researchers an environment that triggers innovation and breakthrough ventures. It brings together students and faculty from across UCLA, including the health and computer sciences, engineering and the humanities to develop new ventures.”

The school describes the space as “technology-rich” and is divided into individual offices, meeting and conference rooms, a kitchen and open workspaces. According to UCLA Anderson Senior Associate Dean Alfred Osborne, about 80 second-year MBAs are currently using the space for their capstone projects in which they are starting and running businesses.

UCLA Anderson Senior Associate Dean Alfred Osborne. Courtesy photo

UCLA Anderson Senior Associate Dean Alfred Osborne. Courtesy photo

ACCELERATOR MEANT TO SERVE AS ACTIVE LEARNING PLATFORM

Osborne, who is also the founder and faculty director at UCLA Anderson’s Price Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, says the new space is a physical representation of Anderson’s commitment to entrepreneurship. “The Anderson Graduate School of Management is making a commitment to be more visible and supportive of entrepreneurship and innovation in the larger community,” Osborne tells Poets&Quants. “It’s an important resource to students, faculty and staff who are launching new products and services,” noting the space will be made available to both for-profit business and nonprofit organizations.

The accelerator will first be used by the second-year MBAs, but Osborne anticipates undergraduate students and alumni involved with current student ventures to also use it soon. In addition to a physical commitment to entrepreneurship, Osborne said the space is intended to drive active learning.

“We are committed to the value of active learning,” Osborne insists. “It’s not enough anymore for us to just tell you stuff and give you case assignments and lecture. Students need to be active and involved and use what they’re learning now. And the way to do that is in a laboratory and a business and learn by creating and going through it.”