Skip to main content
interns for startups
Ignite Intern for Startups first cohort

The inaugural cohort of Ignite Intern for Startups, one of Cornell University’s gap funding programs under Ignite Cornell Research: Lab to Market, welcomes a diverse group of students whose backgrounds span from engineering to biological sciences and economics.

With budget constraints, hiring can be challenging for early-stage startups. This program allows eligible companies to recruit and compensate an intern for up to 11 weeks to fulfill an important internship position. The program has supported the selection of four qualified Cornell students working during the summer with Cornell-licensed startups on research and business projects.

“This immersive program is an additional tool within the ecosystem for startups to perform projects that they would not have been able to fund otherwise while providing entrepreneurial exposure to students,” said Lynda Inséqué, senior program manager, technology initiatives & outreach at the Center for Technology Licensing (CTL), who manages the Ignite program. “We are thrilled to welcome the first cohort of Ignite Interns.”

The interns selected were:

George Dong, an undergrad student in the College of Arts and Sciences at Cornell, will work at Intermix Performance Materials, a company developing a multi-block compatibilizer additive technology that increases the efficient and cost-effective recycling of post-consumer mixed plastic waste and produces higher quality resultant resins, as a business analyst intern. George is studying for a Bachelor of Arts in economics with a minor in statistics.

EK (Eungkyun) Kim, a Ph.D. candidate in the electrical and computer engineering department, will work at Soctera, a company developing the world’s first aluminum nitride-based power amplifier, as a radio-frequency device engineer. EK is also part of the Jena-Xing laboratory at Cornell, where he designs, fabricates, and characterizes nitrogen-polar GaN/AlGaN/AIN HEMTs.

Zixuan (Brian) Wu, a Ph.D. candidate in the mechanical and aerospace engineering department, will work at Geegah, a company developing advanced sensors to offer the most secure and convenient biometric sensors, as an ultrasonic imaging microsystem development intern. Brian is also part of the Bio-Inspired Fluid Laboratory (Jung Lab) at Cornell, where he has worked on several projects from drop fragmentation on superhydrophobic (SH) substrates from high inertia impact to identifying rainforest canopy species from acoustic analysis of the leaf-raindrop effects.

Yaoyi Xing, an undergrad student in the College of Arts and Sciences at Cornell, will work at Esper Biosciences Inc, a company developing a low-cost, high-speed DNA sequencer for point-of-care medical diagnostics and scientific research, as a molecular biology intern. Yaoyi is studying for a Bachelor of Science in biological sciences.

Ignite Intern for Startups is funded by the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation (OVPRI) and managed by the Center for Technology Licensing at Cornell University. Learn more here.

About Ignite Cornell Research: Lab to Market

Ignite: Cornell Research Lab to Market gap funding series is overseen and managed by Center for Technology Licensing, Cornell’s tech transfer office, and supported by the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation (“OVPRI”). Its purpose is to accelerate technology commercialization, venture creation and growth, and corporate collaboration, create training and career opportunities for students and researchers for entrepreneurship and advance Cornell innovation for societal impact and university mission. With major expansion in FY2022, funding level for the Ignite series has been increased to $3 million per year with ambitious goals to grow innovation pipeline for success and impact. The gap funding series is supported by the Provost’s office and a generous donation from Peggy J. Koenig ’78.

Lynda Inséqué
Senior Program Manager, Technology Initiatives & Outreach

Media Contact
Veronica Buezo Talavera
Manager, Digital Media & Marketing