ASK! Certificate Program

ASK Certificate

Applied Startup Knowledge is a unique, applied, interdisciplinary, heavily experiential educational program designed to introduce diverse graduate students from outside the College of Business to “entrepreneurship and new business startups.
The program has three significant attributes:

1) anticipates and fosters collaboration among students of diverse prior backgrounds, inculcating effective team-building and leadership skills;

2) has a layered curriculum that first brings all students to a sufficient level of competency that they can assess personal interest, fit, and future goals and then guides startup teams toward a successful launch; and

3) from the start, introduces and engages students in the greater entrepreneurship ecosystem beyond UIC.

The program has a strong bias for action and is designed around three courses:

Learn –  ENTR 521: Startup Exploration –  A rigorous, interdisciplinary, pragmatically oriented semester-long 4-credit foundation course that introduces all essential business startup concepts and vocabulary. It highlights essential aspects of accounting, finance, marketing, organization design and business modeling, is taught by experienced startup faculty and tempered with a bias toward action;

Launch – ENTR 523: Startup Launch    A second semester-long 4-credit Launch Program that is designed as an experiential lab course. It focuses on individualized coaching and mentoring of startup teams by faculty, staff and experienced entrepreneurs; and,

Join – ENTR 541:  Startup Integration  – The third 1-credit course aims to integrate students into relevant organizations and activities within the ongoing UIC Business entrepreneur community and the growing Chicago-area entrepreneurial ecosystem incubators, accelerators, and other resources (1871, Technori Pitch, iBio/Propel).

The program is a UIC approved Certificate program. It is open to graduate students from outside the College of Business and to other degree and non-degree seeking students with the permission of the instructor.


Instructor: Joe SheahanSheahan, Joe - Head Shot

Joe Sheahan is the Cofounder and CEO of Savvo Digital Sommelier Solutions, an integrated shopper marketing startup focused on promoting wine and beer brands with a digital and physical presence in the retail environment.  Savvo is the third startup Joe has been involved with, having Cofounded NovoView Diagnostics while getting his MBA at UIC and being an early employee at a healthcare IT startup immediately following grad school.  Prior to getting into the startup world, Joe was in the hospitality industry having run multiple restaurants in Chicago and Madison, Wisconsin, where he found his passion for wine. 

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