A public research university that nurtures and inspires inquisitive minds, UMBC combines innovative teaching with relevant research across disciplines in one of the country’s most inclusive education communities.

UMBC serves 14,000 undergraduate and graduate students and provides the learning opportunities of a liberal arts college with the creative intensity of a research university. Bolstered by government and industry partnerships advancing entrepreneurship, workforce training, and technology commercialization programs, the university is dedicated to helping students achieve excellence and contributing to the state’s economic development.

bwtech@UMBC

Harnessing the resources, research, and expertise of UMBC, bwtech@UMBC Research and Technology Park enables companies to start, grow, and stay in Maryland. bwtech@UMBC offers Cyber, GovTech, and BioTech Incubators to promote the progress of companies at all stages of development. In addition to receiving the space they need to grow their companies, members also benefit from the guidance of Entrepreneurs in Residence who can help them transform innovative ideas into scalable businesses. And, UMBC students assisting at bwtech provide additional humanpower for projects while gaining valuable on-the-ground experience.

bwtech@UMBC houses 131 companies and organizations that employ nearly 1,900 people and have generated $700M in labor income and business sales. It has also been the starting point for several successful alumni- and faculty-led businesses and innovations, including:

Faculty Companies

Blue Nalu logo

BlueNalu, Inc.

Recognized by the Binational Agricultural Research Development (BARD) Fund for his contributions to the most impactful project in the organization’s 40-year history, the research of Yonathan Zohar, PhD, led to the sustainable growth of high-value commercial fish species through hatchery-based aquariums. Prior to this scientific breakthrough, these fish had to be caught in the wild because they would not reproduce in aquariums. But, Dr. Zohar, Chair of the Department of Marine Biotechnology at UMBC, developed a drug delivery system that extended the release of hormones in these fish, facilitating their reproduction in aquaculture environments. This research has also been utilized for several other valuable applications, including the development of new cancer and drug treatments as well as COVID-19 vaccines.

VakSea logo

VakSea

Nervous necrosis virus, or NNV, is responsible for the deaths of millions of fish raised in aquaculture environments each year. Tasked with developing a vaccine for this disease, Vikram Vakhria, PhD and Department of Marine Biotechnology professor at UMBC, determined that an oral vaccine delivered through food would be a simpler and more efficient method than injection. When Dr. Vakria succeeded in creating an oral vaccine, he founded VakSea and worked with Allotropic Tech, Inc., a bwtech@UMBC company, to begin commercial production.

NuMoon Technologies logo

NuMoon Technologies, LLC

To enhance the safety of military personnel, Bradley Arnold, PhD and Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at UMBC associate professor, developed a monitoring system using laser technology to detect explosive materials while traveling at high speeds. Currently for use in vehicles, this device searches for potentially hazardous materials at the molecular level and can alert the driver to the presence of explosives, nerve agents, and biological threats. Dr. Arnold plans to expand the application of this device to also provide civilian protection, enhancing security in large and crowded areas such as airports and stadiums.

The success of each of these companies underscores UMBC’s commitment to strengthening local and state economies with bwtech@UMBC.

By bridging higher education and business, both can work together to bring their ideas to fruition. bwtech@UMBC is proud to be part of that process, providing resources, support, and a space to grow for today’s innovators and tomorrow’s.

Frequently Asked Questions


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