The MIT Venture Mentoring Service (MIT VMS) was founded in 2000 after two successful MIT-affiliated serial entrepreneurs – the late Professor David Staelin and alumnus Alexander Dingee – independently approached Provost Robert Brown with similar proposals to remedy a gap in how the university supports emerging entrepreneurial ventures. Convinced of the need, the Provost charged the two with developing a program. Learn more
what our mentees say
VMS has been an exceptional resource. When we set out, we were three co-founders with an idea and some technology. Our mentors helped guide us to turn those ideas and technology into a product and company. They helped us focus on what's most important at each stage along the way. Our mentors have been a great sounding board; with their help, we spun out of Draper Laboratory, raised venture capital, and are building an exciting, new, scalable cyber-security business.
The wisdom of experienced mentors at the VMS has really helped us get started and allowed us to move fast.
When we first started out we were a consulting organization. VMS was instrumental in helping us design the original business and helped us as we shifted to a product company. They also provided a lot of critical early advice. Now, VMS is a great community of fellow entrepreneurs!
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Being a mentor at VMS has been one of the most rewarding and enjoyable experiences of my career... This year, I decided to pledge to support the endowment for VMS to help ensure that this exceptionally valuable resource for the MIT community can be sustained indefinitely.
Jeff Bernstein has been both mentor and mentee with the MIT Venture Mentoring Service. He is an engineer, research and technology expert, who has advised four dozen ventures. He was a research scientist with Lyric Semiconductor, a VMS-mentored venture, which was acquired by Analog Devices. A serial entrepreneur, he co-founded the pioneering video-conferencing company, PictureTel, as well as other ventures. He has a master’s in electrical engineering and computer science from MIT and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland. VMS sincerely thanks Jeff for his early and generous pledge to the VMS Endowment Fund.