Start Something College of Engineering

Start Something College of Engineering
Henry Shires

Meet the Cystarters who created a sports analytics business

Start Something provides a customer-focused approach to defining value in new product and process development.  By engineering solutions which create real value in the minds of customers our engineers will efficiently and effectively achieve success for their companies and themselves.

Our decisions are shaped by the aspiration to create meaning and impact; to be entrepreneurial in all that we do. This is the Entrepreneur’s Ethic.

  1. Make Things Happen – Be action-oriented. Play off your front foot.
  2. Invest for Tomorrow – Be future-oriented. Spend time and resources for long-term impact.
  3. Seek Truth in Everything – Be candor-oriented. Don’t be a fraud and don’t be afraid to call a fraud a fraud.
  4. Mentor in All Directions – Be teaching-oriented. Find a mentor and be a mentor.
  5. Be the Real You – Be authenticity-oriented. Be yourself and let others be themselves.
  6. Fail Successfully – Be experiment-oriented. Learn from mistakes and move upward.
  7. Solve Hard Problems – Be others-oriented. Find means to solve intractable problems.

Meet the Department Mentors

Mentors have experience in the commercialization of technology and the creation and operation of technology businesses and are uniquely skilled to mentor students.

Student Success Stories

  • Award-winning business ideas

CyStarter Testimonials

Get Involved! Attend an event!

Find an event or program that interests you!


Competitions offer great opportunities to raise capital for your idea, startup or existing business.

David Sly

In the College of Engineering, StartSomething is about teaching and coaching students to partner with customers to engineer value-oriented, marketable solutions.

David Sly, Start Something Director


Train and develop the mindset, skills and behaviors of high-impact engineering entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs and change-makers. Our focus is on efficient and effective new product and process introduction.

Key Objectives

  • Entrepreneurial mindset and skills educational experience to every engineering student at least once a year for each of their four years.
  • Support to engineering students to innovate and build great entrepreneurial and/or intrapreneurial ventures.
  • Support to engineering faculty for the development of effective entrepreneurial mindset and skill experiences for their students.
  • Support to industry to engage with entrepreneurially minded students in developing new products and technologies on campus and within their companies.

Innovate at Iowa State