VMS is open to all members of the MIT community (students, faculty, staff and alumni) who have ideas and want to start new businesses. Learn more


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

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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.

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The wisdom of experienced mentors at the VMS has really helped us get started and allowed us to move fast.

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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!


VMS is open to all members of the MIT community (students, faculty, staff, and alumni) who have ideas and want to start businesses. You must be based in the greater Boston area.

VMS in the news

Hey,Charlie and nesterly win big at the MIT IDEAS Challenge. Read More.

Cogito Corp voice analyzing software improves call center experience. Read More in the Boston Globe.

Ministry of Supply now offering instant 3D-printed custom-fit blazers at their Newbury Street location. Read More.

How patience helped Gauri Nanda from Toymail land a deal on Shark Tank. Read More.

Looking for more VMS news?

support vms

Did you know that the MIT Venture Mentoring Service relies almost entirely on private donations? With your generous financial support, you will join those that have shown their commitment to helping VMS educate MIT's emerging entrepreneurs. Learn more.

ADOPTING the mit vms model

MIT VMS can help you establish a formal, sustainable and scalable mentoring program based on our model. Learn more.

Company Spotlight - PlenOptika

PlenOptika increases access to eyeglasses for billions worldwide with thier product, the QuickSee, which provides accurate eyeglass exams in 10 seconds.

Making eye care accessible for the billion people who need it most.


I am thrilled to be part of VMS. Initially, I joined because it sounded like a lot of fun, but it has become so much more for me. It permits me to give back, of my time, experience, and money, to both MIT and to the many entrepreneurs who are part of the VMS effort...

Bob Stearns is an entrepreneur and high technology executive with background in technology, marketing, planning, venture capital, computing, communications, medical and scientific devices, the Internet, and enterprise software.

VMS thanks Bob for his volunteerism, generosity and service to MIT and the entrepreneurial community.

Learn more about Bob and why he supports MIT VMS