Innovation & Entrepreneurship

Turn your great ideas into the products and services of tomorrow

Open to all Luddy students and the broader IU community, the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program helps students seize their future and do things that have never been done before.

We support aspiring innovators and entrepreneurs through an incubator, activities, mentoring, scholarships, and more.

A springboard for success

While Adam Sobol was an undergrad studying informatics, he founded CareBand, which uses wearable sensors to monitor the movement and daily activity of seniors living with dementia.

Luddy helped Adam develop the skill set to succeed with CareBand by exposing him to several forms of computing. Winning an IU entrepreneurship competition helped, too: Adam got money to turn his idea into reality and learned a lot from pitching to a group of distinguished Luddy and IU alumni.

The Shoebox, IU’s student startup incubator

The Shoebox helps student entrepreneurs build, launch, and sustain their businesses. Student startups can apply for 24/7 access to the Shoebox’s office space, which is located in the Shoemaker Innovation Center.

The Shoebox also collaborates with the Hoosier Hatchery pre-incubator at the Kelley School of Business and Bloomington’s Dimension Mill startup accelerator.

Shoebox Fund

The purpose of the fund, which is administered in partnership with the IU Philanthropic Venture Fund through IU Ventures, is to support an entrepreneurial culture for students at Indiana University by providing pre-seed funding to viable early stage IU student-led companies. Student entrepreneurs are eligible to receive an investment through the fund if they have served at least one semester as an active Shoebox client, as well as participated in at least one university-sponsored startup development activity. Investment decisions are made by the Investment Committee, and returns on investments made are returned to the fund to be reinvested in IU student startups.

Shoebox Scholarship Program

The Shoebox Scholarship Program supports students who have been accepted to work in the Shoebox. These students are designated as Shoebox clients and are eligible to receive the support made available through the Shoebox. This program is comprised of an array of scholarships, all designed with the intent to encourage key activities which support a viable, vibrant university-based, student incubator. In turn, the selection process for each scholarship run through this program is driven by applicant's ability to demonstrate how they engaged in experiential learning through the development of their invention and/or start-up over the course of the semester.

To apply for coworking space, write to


Shoemaker Technology Inventor and Entrepreneur
Speaker Series

  • September 29th, Hunter Hawley, Founder & CEO, Blueprint Stats
  • October 20th, Malcolm Silberman, Director of Product Management, Grant Thornton LLP
  • October 27th, Anna Doris, Founder & CEO, Everewear
  • December 1st, Tarek Alaruri, COO & Co-Founder, Fairmarket
  • February 2nd, Ravi Bhatt, Founder & CEO, Folia
  • March 1st, TBD
  • March 22nd, TBD
  • April 19th, TBD

Velocity Conference in Silicon Valley

Each year, a group of Luddy graduate students travels to Silicon Valley to learn firsthand from successful tech entrepreneurs. You pay for transportation, and donors cover the food, hotel, and logistics costs. Grad students, we’ll email you when the application for the next Velocity Conference goes live.

Learn about the Velocity Conference


Mentoring programs

We offer a variety of mentoring to help you bring your ideas to life. To schedule a session, write to

Shoemaker entrepreneurship mentoring sessions

Each month, experienced professionals in the entrepreneurship community meet with students to give feedback on their business concepts. The sessions are free, and there's no obligation to work with the mentors or their companies.

Ice Miller startup law advisory sessions

We’ve partnered with Ice Miller, one of Indianapolis’s largest law firms, to provide free initial consultations to student innovators—so you can have the confidence to expand your intellectual property without the fear of losing your rights.

After the initial consultation, there’s no obligation to work with Ice Miller. Subsequent meetings, filing fees, and other miscellaneous charges will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis.

Elevate Ventures capital counseling sessions

Through a partnership with Elevate Ventures, a prominent, Indiana-based venture capital fund, experienced investors provide free initial consultations to student entrepreneurs regarding what they should be considering when raising capital for their start-up.

After the initial consultation, there's no obligation to work with Elevate Ventures. In addition, holding a meeting with Elevate Ventures does not constitute an investment commitment.

DeveloperTown technology counseling sessions

Due to a partnership with DeveloperTown, an experienced, Indiana-based technology and product development firm, technologists provide free guidance to student entrepreneurs regarding what they should be considering when building the technology inherent in the concepts they are developing.

There's no obligation to work with DeveloperTown, and any agreements with DeveloperTown are made directly between the student and the firm.

Profile for Elli Symes

Ellie Symes

CEO, The Bee Corp