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ENTREP 475: NUvention: AI

Quarter Offered

Winter: Mondays, 6 – 9 p.m. CT, Evanston


There are no prerequisites, but prior Farley coursework or practical experience in a relevant field is encouraged. An application is required. 


NUvention: AI (ENTREP 475) brings together students from across Northwestern schools to build technology-based ventures that focus on the intersection of artificial intelligence (AI), analytics, Internet of Things (IoT), and entrepreneurship. The course is designed to expose students to all aspects of venture creation in the AI space by combining business strategy, technology development, and mentorship. Through a series of tech talks, students are also introduced to a wide range of subjects and industry experts who present on topics related to AI and analytics, including computer vision, natural language processing, machine learning, smart IoT devices, cloud infrastructure, real-time data processing, cybersecurity, and AI ethics.

Learn more about the course.


David Zaretsky

Course Details

Requirements that this course satisfies: Serves as the experiential course for the Farley undergraduate and graduate minors in entrepreneurship

Duration: 3 hours, once per week

Class size: 40-45 students

Who Should Enroll

Open to all Northwestern undergraduate and graduate students interested in venture creation in the AI and analytics space.

Apply Now

Applications for the Winter 2023 section of this course have closed. Any questions can be sent to


NUvention advisers are industry experts who bring real world experience into the classroom on a regular basis. They collaborate with the faculty and mentor students, providing feedback as the students innovate. Students often cite their advisers as playing a crucial role in their student journey.

Willem Bakker

Bakker is an innovation coach and mentor within Chicago’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. After a career in engineering, entrepreneurship, and business leadership, Bakker pursued a second career in academia and nonprofits and currently coaches business owners on how to use technology to innovate. 


David Jakopac

Jakopac is the vice president, engineering and data science at InRule, an AI-enabled decision and process automation technology company. He is also co-founder of Reputada, a B2B service that helps businesses leverage customer feedback, and was formerly vice president and co-founder of Lisle Technology Partners, a strategic business consulting firm for tech startups. 


Anne Marie Johlie

Johlie is the head of Internet of Things at Parker Hannifen, which develops motion and controls technologies. A lifelong engineer, she led engineers in the development of public safety telecommunications systems at Motorola and Motorola Solutions for more than 20 years. 


Bob Meyerhoff

Meyerhoff is president at Information Logistics, which designs and builds technology to support public information and internal communications for the transportation industry. Previously, he was vice president at Stats Perform, a sports technology company across media and tech, betting, and team performance.


Harish Natarahjan

Natarahjan is senior manager of strategy and consulting at Accenture. He brings nearly 20 years of product, strategy, and technology expertise, and has driven technological and business innovations at Panasonic, U.S. Cellular, and Motorola Solutions. 


Reese Schroeder

Schroeder is an investor at Allstate Strategic Ventures. Previously, he served as managing director at Tyson Ventures and director of corporate and business development at Motorola. He brings expertise in corporate venture capital, corporate innovation, strategy, and M&A expertise in the technology sector.


Harrison Shih

Shih is a senior director at DoorDash and is the founder of Proma Ventures, a venture capital company that invests in early-stage deep-tech software/hardware companies. He brings expertise in product management and leadership, with experience at Google and Frankly Inc.


Melissa Tortorich

Tortorich is a senior strategy consultant and adviser who leverages fifteen years of strategy consulting experience across multiple industries to enable leaders to think strategically, communicate effectively, and harness their greatest strengths. Previously, she served as an offering development manager at Accenture.


Jennifer Wei

Wei is the founder and CEO of WZ Recruiting. Previously, she was senior manager in operations at Here, the industry leader in mapping technologies for in-dash navigation, a consultant at Accenture, and a senior mechanical engineer at Motorola Solutions. She received a BS and MEM from Northwestern, and serves as chair of Northwestern’s MEM program advisory board.


Aviran Yaakov

Yaakov is the CEO and cofounder of EcoPlant Technological Innovation, an AI-based software company that aims to help industrial organizations drastically reduce electricity consumption. He is a serial entrepreneur and CEO with a track record in leading complex SaaS sales cycles in the AI/IoT, information systems, and industrial automation industry.

Network of Experts

The Farley Center connects students with a robust network of innovation and entrepreneurship experts. These experts serve as guest judges, attend pitch events, and give talks and seminars.


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