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Internship Lets CS Students Pitch Proposals to VC Firm

Three teams of  University of Illinois computer science students are spending the summer trying to launch their own companies with the help of an internship that requires them to pitch their own software or web based services to potential investors.

The iVentures10 program is a 10-week internship that gives the computer science and engineering students the money and resources to create prototype software for Web-based applications.

The program is funded through Illinois Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on in information technologies, physical sciences, and life sciences, with an emphasis on projects conducted at the University of Illinois.

At the conclusion of the iVentures10, each student team will be able to present their product idea to a panel of investors to attract additional capital to continue their venture.

"We are used to doing this type of programming in the classroom but now we can be exposed to the real world," said Hyung-Sul Kim, a member of  a team developing a product called OhThere!

The OhThere! Service would allow users to save and share physical places and locations as easily as they can with websites. The service blends social bookmarking with social networking and mobile technology to make it easy for members to "bookmark" their favorite locations.

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About the Author

Paul McCloskey is contributing editor of Syllabus.

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