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ZACHARY J. commented on Sponsored By (Updated 12/15/15)

This is interesting. I like that this is a win win solution. I have some questions/concerns about why companies would participate. I hope they are helpful. 

A: Companies can be reluctant to invest their time, money, and brand into something like this due to an inability to extract the value created. The major value outputs being (I think): monetary value of the work of the students, the value of any hires from the coursework, any positive brand image accrued by participation, and any specific learnings that might benefit across their business. In short, the summation of these must be positive and translate (in an easily explainable way, hopefully) to a business's bottom line. I foresee an intricate contract might be required to ensure the business can appropriate their fair share of value. This will be especially tricky should you want businesses to propose and contribute projects of importance/value to the program. 

B: I think of student work as highly variable. Some students will perform up to the needs of the business, some might/will not. Is it possible that businesses might be more willing to give "real" projects of value if student output variability was less?  A more competitive student field might entice more business participation through the concentration of (expected) value.