Innovation Programs

Jump Start

Jump Start is our online solution generator for businesses and innovators to overcome complex challenges. Generating ideas and solutions begins first with creative thinking and no one understands creative thinking quite like our Jump Start facilitators. Jump Start participants are guaranteed to walk away with new solutions from the help of our online facilitated program.

The Jump Start program is offered in three different sessions to best fit you and your team’s needs.

Half Day

Time commitment: 4 hours 

  • Facilitated Creative thinking exercises
  • Brainstorming three new solutions

Full Day

Time commitment: 8 hours 

  • A review of the CPS model
  • Facilitated practice on model with a hypothetical
  • Creative thinking exercises
  • Brainstorm session

Two Day

Time commitment: 14 hours 

  • A review of the CPS model
  • Facilitated practice on model w/hypothetical
  • Creative thinking exercises
  • Dig into company problem
  • Plus, implementation and strategy time

Participant Benefits:

  • Formulation of innovative and novel ideas that answer complex challenges 
  • Facilitated help through the Creative Problem Solving Process 
  • Expansion on creativity skills 

Get Started Today

WKI is an online design platform for innovators that incorporates the “So what? Who Cares? Why you?” methodology to help take an innovative idea to market. The methodology has been proven to increase the success rate of ideation, pre-incubation, and technology commercialization.

A valuable feature to the WKI program is that it can be self-paced. Program participants have the option to work through WKI tools and strategies themselves on the online platform with regular check-ins with a Center for Innovation Business Coach, or can be led directly by a Center for Innovation Business Coach. Some examples of tools in the WKI program are: 

  • Napkin Drawing Tool 
  • Financial Model 
  • The Pitch Deck 

Participant Benefits:

  • Support projects, products, and startup company ideas to commercialization 
  • Learn how to tell others why your idea matters and how it creates value 
  • Map the business value of your new idea

Innovate ND

Through expert guidance from entrepreneur coaches, certified entrepreneurial centers, and extensive leadership courses, Innovate ND provides the entrepreneurial community of North Dakota with resources needed to help grow your innovative idea into a scaleable business. The program includes up to $40,000 across has four phases to assist in growing your business.

Participant Benefits:

  • Access to the Center for Innovation 
  • Coaching using the Business Model Canvas and Lean Launch methodologies
  • Business planning tools 
  • Prototype development 
  • Access to the statewide entrepreneurial ecosystem


The federal SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) and STTR (Small Business Technology Transfer) programs can assist eligible small businesses with funding to advance technology solutions with federal funds through a number of federal agencies.

The SBIR and STTR programs offer more than $2.5 billion dollars annually to support the development of technology by small businesses across the nation and are an excellent source of undiluted early stage capital, but they are highly competitive.

Together, we assemble a team of advocates who will help you evaluate the feasibility of your idea and apply for an SBIR or STTR.

Participant Benefits:

  • Research and development grant funding 
  • Collaboration with a research institution 
  • Assists in bridging the gap between science and commercialization of resulting innovations