The University of Newcastle, Australia

Entrepreneurship programs

The Integrated Innovation Network (I2N) offers a range of events and courses developed by UON and a complimentary range of accelerator programming by partners.

For details on upcoming I2N events and programs visit Eventbrite.

Talks and Workshops

Startup Stories

Startup founders talk candidly about their experience as an entrepreneur and business owner – the highs, the lows, the wins, the mistakes, the whole enchilada. Startup Stories provides real-life examples of the different stages of the startup journey, creating a forum for startups to share and learn but also for the community to see tangible evidence of entrepreneurship making a difference in our region. Startup Stories takes place every Thursday from 8AM at I2N Hub Hunter Street (376 Hunter St, Newcastle). The talks are also filmed and available for viewing here.

Join the Dots

Join like-minded and curious business people, innovators, researchers and entrepreneurs to stay informed and connected. A short and sharp series of pitches from entrepreneurs, SMEs, and researchers within a particular sector kick off the event followed by informal networking to help you join the dots for future collaboration. Join the Dots takes place on the second Wednesday of every month between 5-7PM at I2N Hub Muswellbrook (87 Hill St, Muswellbrook) and on the last Wednesday of every month between 5-7PM at I2N Hub Hunter Street (376 Hunter St, Newcastle).

Ideas Collider

At Ideas Collider we bring together students, researchers, industry sector workers, and community and split participants into mixed teams of 3-5 people. We then announce a grand challenge for teams to develop a potentially commercial solution for in under 60 minutes and then pitch it to the audience and a panel of expert judges. This event provides attendees with the opportunity to work with diverse teams, build communication, problem-solving and presentation skills in a fun and judgment-free environment. It is the perfect chance to learn about the world of hackathons and participants don’t need to have any specific skills to take part. Ideas Collider takes place in April, July and September at I2N Hub Hunter Street. The program is also available to be run at schools and large organisations.


This 5-week online course offers a mix of materials for every style of learning, weekly mentorship from expert practitioners and the tools you need to create your startup all in one place. It’s designed for emerging business leaders and innovators that want a masterclass in entrepreneurship. This course is practical and hands-on with a carefully curated a mix of perspectives – you’re not learning business, you’re learning to build a startup with proven methods. This program takes place from March, June and September. More details here.

New Futures Hackathon

New Futures Hackathons are sector-focused hackathons for people of all backgrounds and experience who share a passion for technology, design, innovation and making the world a better place. Meet new people, be exposed to fresh ideas, learn new skills and build creative, original work.  New Futures Hackathons takes place in May and October each year. More details here.

I2N Innovation Expert programs

I2N Innovation Expert programs are available to UON community (students, faculty, staff, and alumni), members of I2N Hubs and participants in partner accelerator programs.

I2N Office Hours

Startups founders can take advantage of a one-on-one with IP experts from Newcastle Innovation and/or understand their insurance requirements with Adam Hines from Aether Insurance. To book a 30-minute appointment at 2N Hub Hunter Street between 9AM - 5PM on the third Tuesday of every month, please complete the EOI form.

I2N Venture Mentoring Service

I2N Venture Mentoring Service is open to UON community (students, faculty, staff, and alumni), members of I2N Hubs and participants in partner accelerator programs who have ideas and want to start businesses. You must be based in the greater Newcastle area to participate. Details on how founders and mentors can participate in the program will be available in late 2018.

Partner accelerator programs

I2N Icon Regional Accelerator

The I2N Icon Regional Accelerator program provides a Hunter region focused accelerator program for startups from any sector. For entry into this program, all startup participants are required to be building an internationally scalable business. Icon offers two programs: a pre-accelerator program, called Icon Business Bootcamp, designed for potential entrepreneurs who are at idea stage or thinking about founding a startup; and the 10-week Icon Accelerator where startups receive funding, mentorships, connections, knowledge and additional services, totaling over $500,000 to accelerate their business. Icon is based on the proven ‘Accelerated by Slingshot’ methodology and builds on a longstanding track record of successful collaboration between UON and Slingshot. While UON’s current entrepreneurship courses provide a pipeline of applicants, UON and Slingshot also actively seek broader community engagement to ensure diversity in each pre-accelerator (Aug) and accelerator (Oct-Dec) cohort.


CSIRO ON is Australia's sci-tech innovation accelerator dedicated to unearthing amazing research and steering it towards high potential innovative ventures. Established by CSIRO in 2015, ON specialises in assisting researchers from the fields of science and technology working on projects that have the potential to shape Australia's future.  ON offers a range of accelerator services to research teams at different stages of the innovation lifecycle. If you're working on some promising research but are trying to establish a real-world application for it, ON Prime is the program for you (twice annually). If your research has been validated and you’re seeking to take it to the next level, then ON Accelerate can help (once annually).

UON courses and degree programs

Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Startups (STAR4000)

STAR4000 has been developed in collaboration with corporate accelerator Slingshot. It provides students with skills in entrepreneurship and builds an understanding of the key elements of business creation, providing pathways for innovation and future self-employment. Students are taught by experienced entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, business strategists, and corporate leaders from both Australia and overseas. Students will be expected to complete an applied assessment exercise centered on creating and validating a new startup enterprise, which will culminate in a business pitch at the end of the course. This 5-day workshop commences on the first Thursday of Winter Term.

Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Startups - International Experience (STAR4100)

Putting their skills developed in STAR4000 into practice on an international scale, this experience will provide students with the real-life practices to help propel their international startup journey. STAR4100 focuses on the skills and insights required to build a company, commercialise products and conduct business in the SE Asian region and will provide immersion experiences including the opportunity to spend time in Singaporean co-working spaces to experience an accelerator and/or incubator; site visits to some of the world's leading and largest technology companies; and opportunities to connect with Startup founders, Venture Capital investors, and UON Alumni paving their way in the SE Asia market. This course is supported by Austrade, Slingshot, SendGrid and UON Singapore,

Law for Startups (LAWS6113)

LAWS6113 takes students through the key legal steps of moving from an idea to an operating business. The course commences by highlighting some common legal mistakes made by startups. The focus then shifts to key legal and regulatory issues behind the various stages of the startup. This includes both a practical focus on what can be done effectively on a tight budget at an early stage and identification of areas where a significant legal spend will add value as the startup matures.

Bachelor of Innovation & Entrepreneurship/Bachelor of Laws (Honors)

The Bachelor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship/Bachelor of Laws (Honours) prepares students with the academic knowledge and practical experience needed to become highly competitive in rapidly changing regional, national and global economies and communities. Embedding business, innovation, and entrepreneurial knowledge into a combined degree program with practical experiences give students a substantial edge when applying for jobs in both the public and private sectors.

Innovation Entrepreneurship major

Innovation and entrepreneurship are at the forefront of economic growth both domestically and internationally. When completing this major, students gain vital skills and knowledge to think creatively and distinctively in new situations and reduce risk in professional practice. The entrepreneurship and innovation major incorporates a practical industry placement and gives confidence and skills to launch exciting new business ventures. This major can lead to a career in consultancy or management, creating success and maintaining value, across a range of organisational structures. This major can be taken alongside Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Creative Industries.

Graduate Certificate in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship

The demand for professionals with the capacity to create and implement new ideas to deliver value for their organisations is ever-increasing. The appetite for pioneering ventures has never been stronger and your capacity to provide creative, innovative opportunities for business is of growing value. Studying a Graduate Certificate in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship will help you strengthen your capacity as an organisational leader or entrepreneur and develop your creativity and adaptability to take your business or your ideas into the future.

Master of Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship

A Master of Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship will increase your value in any organisation driven to stand at the forefront of ever-changing technologies and the business-solutions landscape. As the workforce moves towards a more innovation-focused future, the ability to innovate enables individuals and organisations to gain an important advantage over your competitors. This program is designed for leaders, managers, and entrepreneurs striving to succeed in today’s volatile world, where it is increasingly recognised that entrepreneurship and innovation are central to sustained competitive advantage in a constantly changing business landscape. Whether it’s for your own advancement in the workplace, developing your next innovative venture, or to promote innovation within your team, this program is ideal for professionals yearning to succeed in today’s business world.

Master of Business Administration (Innovation & Entrepreneurship)

Our newly designed MBA is designed to propel you towards success. It reflects the latest in contemporary management practice, providing six fundamental courses covering the foundations of modern business; money, markets and people. More advanced core courses in leadership, strategic management and corporate governance provide pivotal insights into the dynamics of modern organisations. In addition to the core courses, you will have the choice to specialise in Innovation & Entrepreneurship.

Master of BioInnovation and Design

Master of Bioinnovation and Design focuses on collaboration to solve challenges with both local and global impact in the allied health, medical or biomedical field. Through interdisciplinary team learning, you will gain experience in design processes, such as strategies to support innovation, design ethics and research, as well as an introduction to entrepreneurship and startup business models.