Innovation & Entrepreneurship

In the OR and beyond, surgeons combine technical skill with creative problem-solving to continually improve tools and techniques for patient care. That’s why we measure the pace of life-saving innovations in years, not decades.

At the U-M Department of Surgery, we take the spirit of discovery seriously. Our vision is to create an environment where surgical residents who are passionate about innovation have access to the necessary tools and training to foster cutting-edge ideas. In addition to working on research projects with faculty members with specific expertise in innovation, trainees will develop skill sets to advance independent projects. We have created courses around surgical innovation and entrepreneurship that have become a national model for its reach and results. 

Our courses feature:

  • Learning across all levels, from medical students to senior faculty, including a formal curriculum for medical student education in innovation.
  • A focus on teamwork within entrepreneurship, including a first-of-its-kind 9-month course for surgical faculty to develop novel medical solutions.
  • Partnerships with faculty in business and biomedical engineering, fostering relationships to solve medical problems together and bring new products to market.
  • Leadership for innovation and entrepreneurship within the department through a dedicated associate chair position.

We aim to change the field of academic surgery by fostering an environment where surgeons are encouraged to develop new products and ideas.

Education Opportunities

Through hands-on experiences in providing clinical and surgical care, trainees and faculty members can directly identify existing limitations and needs to enhance the patient experience and improve the efficiency of healthcare delivery. Strong connections exist within the Department of Surgery, School of Engineering, and across the campuses of the University of Michigan to support collaborative and multidisciplinary innovation efforts. The University of Michigan and Michigan Medicine are investing in continued advances by providing training programs beginning at the undergraduate medical education level. Programs include:

Opportunities Across Campus

The Department of Surgery collaborates with groups throughout the University of Michigan campus to give our trainees and faculty members well-rounded opportunities to explore innovation training in different spheres. In addition to partnering with groups like Fast Forward Medical Innovation and Tech Transfer on our SIDAC program, our department offers faculty members and trainees the chance to pursue training opportunities through other U-M groups, such as the College of Engineering's Center for Entrepreneurship. Examples of innovation opportunities at the University of Michigan include:

Learn More

Discover the groundbreaking Surgical Innovation Development Accelerator Course (SIDAC) and Michigan Surgical Innovation Accelerator (MSIA).

Get to know key collaborators and groups who are leaders in innovation throughout the University of Michigan and who frequently partner with us for our innovation courses.