Hall of Fame

Business Engagement

We have forged relationships with companies from a broad spectrum of industries, ranging from start-ups to multinational corporations. These ties allow you to leverage our expertise and resources, as well as help inform and strengthen our research and educational programs.

The Business Engagement Center (BEC) provides you with a one-stop gateway to the various research, technology, education, facilities, and talent resources at U-M. The BEC maintains affiliated offices in the College of Engineering and the Medical School, and at the Dearborn and Flint campuses. The BEC has relationships with more than 1,000 companies, and is contacted by nearly 200 new companies each year.

The BEC-facilitated relationships can range from individual research projects to broader engagements, depending on the business need. North American Bankcard (NAB), a medium-sized Michigan-based company that focuses on credit card processing for a wide range of businesses, began its relationship with the BEC to develop a pipeline of talented students to meet their staffing needs. The company has also taken advantage of a project-based program at the Ross School of Business in which teams of MBA students develop solutions to specific company problems.

One of the functions of the BEC is to work with schools and departments to encourage industry sponsorship of research at U-M. Total sponsorship reached $61.6 million in FY 2011.

Contracts for on-campus research are facilitated by the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects. To encourage industry investment in our research, we allow you to negotiate the terms for licensing intellectual property up front during the initial contracting process for major research projects, rather than waiting until after IP has been created.

Tech Transfer oversees all aspects of licensing U-M technology and engages investors and entrepreneurs in the process, encouraging the creation and early development of new companies based on U-M technologies.

The Michigan Corporate Relations Network, a group of six public universities in Michigan, connects corporations to critical university assets to help promote innovative research and expand Michigan’s economy.


Fast Facts

The Business Engagement Center maintains relationships with more than 1,000 companies, and is contacted by nearly 200 new companies each year.