Ignite ConferenceIgnite ConferenceIgnite ConferenceIgnite ConferenceKristen TobeyLorin JohnsonAndrew Smith
Program Detail

Ignite Conference
Fueling Tomorrow's Entrepreneurs

The Ignite conference provides innovative graduate-level students in all disciplines with a chance to meet some of the most successful and up-and-coming entrepreneurs in the Bay Area.

Ignite 2017 Video
Ignite Conference

Bringing together students, CEOs and business leaders

A collaboration between our institute, the UC Davis Graduate School of Management, Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship and Rice University, Ignite is a four-day summit and tour that brings together innovative CEOs and business leaders to speak with students from UC Davis, Rice University and other top universities. Participants network with other students, meet leading entrepreneurs, and visit innovative companies in the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley.

Ignite 2018, held March 7-10, drew a diverse group of more than 90 Ph.D. students, medical students and MBAs from UC Davis and partner universities to learn about early-stage entrepreneurship. In keeping with UC Davis’ and Rice University’s commitment to inclusion, approximately 40 of Ignite’s attendees were women, as were 40 percent of our speakers and panel participants.

UC Davis MBA student Christina Souto bloged on her experiences at Ignite: Finding Passion and Community at Entrepreneurship Conference.

We discussed the critical role of the question “Why?” and how important it is to recognize the motivation and passion behind your entrepreneurial idea. As Mark Randall of Adobe said, “I would rather fail at changing the world, than succeed in an unimportant way.”

Ignite 2018 visited the following companies:

learn from the personal stories of entrepreneurs

This intense immersion experience begins with a welcome reception on the evening of Day 1, Bay Area field trips by bus on Day 2 and thought-provoking speakers on Days 3 and 4. Please check back in October 2018 for Ignite 2019 dates and application.

Ignite 2018 Program Agenda

Students learn from diverse entrepreneurs working to build their companies and from the successes—and failures—of the best and brightest in the Bay Area. 

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The cost for this dymanic and informative four-day experience is only $250. Once accepted into the program, we will send prospective attendees detailed information on how to register. Questions? Please contact Senior Program Manager Niki Peterson.

2018 Featured Speakers

Jack GillJack Gill – Scientist, Venture Capitalist, Professor and Philanthropist

Brad BurkeBrad Burke – Managing Director, Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship

Cleveland JustisCleveland Justis – Executive Director, UC Davis Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Cate DyerCate Dyer – CEO/Founder, StemExpress

Pam MarronePam Marrone – Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Marrone Bio Innovations

Mark RandallMark Randall – Chief Strategist, VP of Creativity, Adobe

Rao UnnavaH. Rao Unnava – Dean and Professor, UC Davis Graduate School of Management

Heather ShapiroHeather Shapiro – Head of Data Science, Pear Therapeutics

Nicholas SeetNicholas Seet – Co-Founder, SIVI AngelList Syndicate

Brad ChisumBrad Chisum – CEO, Chronodyne

Bri JamesBri James – Co-Founder, Scrumpt Inc.

Location, Dates & Travel Information

Ignite 2019 will launch on the UC Davis main campus in Davis, Calif.

Coffee/tea, light snacks and lunch are provided daily. Dinner is provided on Day 1 and Day 4. Lodging, transportation and parking fees are the responsibility of the participant.