Students need industry experience. Startups need talent that doesn't break their budget.

ENT 445 is a for-credit entrepreneurship internship that bridges the gap between UAB students and startups to meet those needs.


In 2014 the Collat School of Business, in partnership with Innovation Depot, developed an Innovation Lab (iLab) located at Innovation Depot. The iLab provides a real-life, entrepreneurial experience for both undergraduate and graduate students. The Innovation Depot is currently home to over 100 small companies of varying size and maturity. Many of these companies welcome unpaid interns for short-term assignments where interns gain valuable, hands-on experience in an entrepreneurial environment while also providing a valuable service to the company. The UAB iLab provides and opportunity for Collat School of Business students to earn credit through an unpaid internship that provides a unique learning experience in one of the best small business incubators in the world.

Description of the Internship Program

  • The internship is an un-paid, three credit hour course during which the student will work with an Innovation Depot company or local startup over the course of the semester. One of the assignments may be in the iLab.
  • The internship is 14 weeks in duration. A minimum of 120 working hours must be completed during the same semester in which the student is enrolled in the internship course.
  • The student will spend an average of 10 hours per week working with the assigned company. The hours will be agreed upon with each company based on the students schedule and company need and must, and unless otherwise agreed, be conducted during normal business hours.

Registering for the Internship Course

  • Students interested in enrollment for ENT445 should submit a letter of interest to Dr. Joel Dobbs at All students will be interviewed as part of the acceptance process.
  • The student must have earned at least 60 credit hours (junior status) and a 2.5-minimum overall GPA and must be currently enrolled in the Collat School of Business. Non-business students who have declared a minor in entrepreneurship are also eligible.
  • Upon approval or denial of the ability to register for the course, the student will be notified by email within 2 business days of the interview.
  • The intern and his or her preceptor must complete the Experience Information Sheet – After completing the form with the assistance of their supervisor, both the student and the supervisor must sign it and return it to the faculty supervisor.

What Our Participants Think about the Program

Gary KhodanianMy learning experience at Icebox thus far has been nothing short of incredible - from leading data-driven process improvement strategies to taking responsibility as the E-Commerce Manager for the business, I've grown as a professional and entrepreneur in more ways than I can describe. Working with a startup through ENT445 has been the most valuable pursuit that I've engaged in at the Collat School of Business, and I'm so proud to be a part of the developing partnership between UAB and Innovation Depot. - Gary Khodanian, Intern, Icebox CoffeeBebe Goodrich with Icebox Coffee

Upon arriving at Icebox Coffee, Gary provided a fresh prospective where he applied classroom learning with his personal experiences to enhancing our company's performance in the e-commerce segment as well as operational efficiencies. In fact, just two weeks into his tenure at Icebox Coffee, he was offered a job that will extend past the internship, where he will run our e-Commerce division. He will essentially start a business from the ground up and measure success and his impact. - BebeGoodrich, Founder, Icebox Coffee


Accepting applications year-round. Interested applicants should email Joel Dobbs,, with resume and expression of interest in taking the course.



ENT 270 - Introduction to Entrepreneurial Management

This introductory course in entrepreneurship is intended to expose students to the entrepreneurial life cycle of a high growth start-up from opportunity identification, to funding and growth, through to harvesting the rewards. Students will learn to think like entrepreneurs, be exposed to entrepreneurial decision making, and learn the dynamics of customer validation through the Lean Startup model. Hours credit: 3.  Prerequisite: None

ENT 420 - Entrepreneurial Finance

Provides core skills in accounting and finance for new- growth-oriented businesses. Hours credit: 3

ENT 421/521 - Entrepreneurial Market Analysis & Planning

This course is designed to help students identify and validate market opportunities and to develop business ideas and business models to match those opportunities.  Students will learn to analyze markets, industries and business environments.  They will also learn to generate innovative ideas.  Finally, they will learn to develop plans to take their ideas to market. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: ENT 270 or MK 303 or BUS 311 or permission of instructor.

ENT 422/522 - Strategic Operations for Entrepreneur

This course will explore the strategic decisions that early stage entrepreneurial mangers face in growing their business. With a focus on the Lean Startup methodology, students will learn how to develop the assumptions behind their business model, create measurable tests for these assumptions, and make critical decisions based on customer data. Hours credit: 3.  Prerequisite: ENT 270 (for ENT 422)

ENT 424 - New Product Development

This course is part one of a two semester course, taught jointly with the Department of Biomedical Engineering.  In this course business students are paired with senior biomedical engineering students in a two semester, team-based learning experience in which the teams conceive, design and build a prototype medical device and the accompanying business plan and design to bring the product to market.  The course will focus on business planning activities including market research, competitive analysis, intellectual property protection, basic finances and business model design.  In addition, instruction, feedback and coaching on interdisciplinary teamwork will be incorporated throughout the semester. Hours credit: 3.  Prerequisite: Permission by instructor

ENT 425/525 - Entrepreneurial Leadership

This course focuses on the attributes of successful entrepreneurial leaders and the factors that differentiate them from less successful ones. Students learn the principles and application of leading entrepreneurial organizations through selected case studies and face-to-face presentations and discussions with locally and nationally known entrepreneurs. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: ENT 270 or permission by instructor

ENT 426 - Practicum in Commercialization

Experiential course where students develop commercialization plans for "live" technology ideas originating from UAB or other sources.

ENT 445 - Entrepreneurship Internship

Standard internship with entrepreneurial business or organization. Hours credit: 3.  Prerequisite: Juinor standing and 2.0 minimum overall GPA. Must be currently enrolled in the Collat School of Business as degree seeking or declared minor in business.

ENT 449 - Directed Study in Entrepreneurship

Standard directed / independent study in the field of Entrepreneurship.

ENT 450/650 - I-Corps Lean Startup

Student teams will execute the Lean Startup approach to develop a business model following the highly successful I-Corps methodology. This is a team-based course where students will spend the semester exploring the viability of a new business venture.  Students will be organized into startup teams and be expected to fully execute all areas of the business model canvas by testing their business assumptions through customer/stakeholder interviews. Students must apply for enrollment with the instructor.  This course has a major group project component. Hours credit: 3. Prerequisite: none


MBA 673 - Planning and Pitching a New Business Concept.

Focuses on transforming technology-based intellectual property into a business plan for a new technology venture.  The content covers business due diligence, business ideation, revenue and business model development, financial modeling, assessing and seeking funding and presenting the plan with confidence.  The course emphasizes experiential learning with intellectual property developed by the students. Hours credit: 3.

MBA 681 - From Idea to IPO

Provides an overview of the technology commercialization lifecycle.  Topics include how to view technology from a business perspective, forms of intellectual property, commercialization options including licensing and new venture creation, funding technology development and new ventures and how to present technology-based opportunities to investors and other business interests.  The course emphasizes experiential learning with intellectual property developed by the students.  Course content is supplemented by outside experts as guest speakers. Hours credit: 3.

MBA 683 - Leading Innovation

Focuses on managing the growth of technology-based new ventures.  Topics include issues and methods associated with maintaining innovation and an innovative culture during the growth phase of a business, implementing Lean Startup principles in a new venture and dealing with the challenges of a growing company including new market entry, personnel issues and funding. Hours credit: 3.

MBA 691 - Directed Study

Individualized study directed by a faculty member. Requires instructor permission.

ENT 526 - Practicum in Commercialization

The Minor in Entrepreneurship is intended to prepare students for new economic realities by providing a foundation in business and entrepreneurial thinking. It is intended to complement the core knowledge they are gaining in their chosen major so that they can find new opportunities to practice within their field. The primary objective is to provide students with the tools they need to think and act entrepreneurially.


This minor is open to all UAB students with a minimum overall 2.0 GPA.

Course Requirements:

Requirements for Non-Business Majors:


ENT 270

Idea to Entrepreneur     


BUS 310

Accounting and Finance for Non-Business Majors


ENT 421

Entrepreneurial Market Analysis and Planning


ENT 425

Entrepreneurial Leadership


ENT Practicum Experience*


ENT Elective**

Total Hours 18

Requirements for Business Majors:


ENT 270

Idea to Entrepreneur


ENT 421

Entrepreneurial Market Analysis and Planning


ENT 425

Entrepreneur to Enterprise


ENT Practicum Experience*


ENT Elective**


ENT Elective**

Total Hours 18

*ENT Practicum Experience choices: ENT 426, ENT 445, ENT 450, ENT 449
**ENT Electives: ENT 420 and ENT 422. Non-business majors select one and Business majors select both.

Entrepreneurs are passionate, visionary, persistent, energetic and creative. They are confident, comfortable taking risks and can deal with uncertainty. These are traits and skills that will serve you well whether you are starting a new business that will change the world, or working in an established company. Entrepreneurialism is really a state of mind.

At the Collat School of Business we teach students how to "think entrepreneurially." Through courses taught by accomplished entrepreneurs and world-class professors combined with real world experience in our Innovation Lab, students gain both fundamental knowledge and hands on practical experience working with real companies to solve real problems that will serve them well regardless of the career they pursue.

Each area listed belopw is designed to help you think entrepreneurially and innovatively. 

Minor in Entrepreneurship

This experiential program is designed for students in any major at UAB. It is designed to complement your core skills and knowledge from your chosen major. Upon completion you’ll be ready to launch a new venture around your passion, contribute to a team or growing company and think entrepreneurially regardless of your chosen career.

Entrepreneurship Certificate (Graduate)

This experiential program also known as the Certificate in Technology Commercialization and Entrepreneurship is designed for any graduate student or individual who has completed an undergraduate degree. It is designed to walk you through the process and requisite skills for moving an idea from conception to market introduction and beyond. The emphasis is on new business formation though other forms of commercialization are explored.

Courses in Innovation & Entrepreneurship

See full listing of undergraduate and graduate courses offered through the Collat School of Business.

Internships through the UAB iLab

Students need industry experience. Startups need talent that doesn't break their budget. ENT 445 is a for-credit entrepreneurship internship that bridges the gap between UAB students and startups to meet those needs.

I-Corps at UAB

I-Corps is the premier, federally funded program to assess the market potential of ideas coming off our campus.

In the News

Entrepreneurship      Innovation