UKAccel  Graphic Identifier




The University of Kentucky (UK) Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC) has established the UKAccel program, which offers a professional development and experiential learning opportunity to UK researchers interested in turning their intellectual property into a potential startup. With guidance from the OTC's New Ventures Team, qualified participants will be granted UKAccel Membership to Awesome Inc, a Lexington-based startup accelerator, to take part in an immersive experience in entrepreneurship culture. The goal is to discover if launching a startup company is right for you!

UK employees should review the Conflict Guidance for UK Employee Entrepreneurs (pdf, 9pgs).

A video overview of the program is available in the OTC Video Library

Who Can Participate?

The UKAccel Program is targeted to UK faculty, staff, researchers, and clinicians that apply to and meet the criteria for the program. OTC set the criteria, which is approved by the vice president for Research. Participation at any given time is subject to space in the program and the availability of funds.


  • Submit a completed UKAccel application to
  • Submit, or have submitted, an Invention Report to the OTC that is related to the potential startup venture, for which rights are not released back to the inventor.
  • Commit to completing the program requirements.


  • An initial “Entrance Interview” will be conducted with the OTC to develop a customized UKAccel Program Plan.
  • Receive a consultation from the OTC to answer additional questions and remain on track.
  • Receive a 3-month UKAccel Membership to Awesome Inc, and commit up to 5 hours per week to utilize their shared workspace and take part in “Accountability Meetings.”
  • Conduct an “Exit Interview” with OTC to determine the next steps in the startup or commercialization pathway.

What are the Program Benefits and Expected Outcomes?

Learn and receive guidance on the Practice of Startup Fundamentals, such as:

  • Business model canvas creation
  • Customer discovery
  • Commercialization pathways
  • Company formation and structure
  • Business plan development
  • Competitive analysis
  • Customer analysis
  • Funding strategies
  • Company management
  • Marketing and business development