Build a Startup: Real Applications of Artificial Intelligence

Advanced Topics in Entrepreneurship & Innovation

INDENG 190E (3 Units)

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Class Description

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AI/ML) breakthroughs are changing the world, pervading every facet of business and society, and creating unprecedented opportunities for startups to create value.

In this class, students will form teams, get exposed to AI opportunities from top AI founders & executives, receive mentorship from leading technologists to apply the latest in AI, take learnings to prototype AI startups, and pitch your startup to leading VCs for funding. The purpose of this class is to inspire students to build a startup with the support of an array of expert guest lecturers, helpful advisors, and motivated peers. Students will gain insights into AI/ML technologies from expert practitioners, and learn about business opportunities from founders of AI-driven businesses, venture capital investors, and other tech executives.

In groups of 3-4, students will select from challenges posed by AI leaders (or devise their own challenge), and follow a step-by-step process to design and prototype a startup. Students will present their work to their peers as well as a panel of AI industry leaders and VCs at the end of the semester. The class provides technical advisors who can help guide development along the way.


Students from all majors, both undergraduate and graduate, are welcome. Technical background is encouraged since we will prototype software, but students from non-technical majors may also join to assemble interdisciplinary teams. The goal is to build a course full of passionate students willing to push their boundaries and build an amazing startup.

Note: the application for the spring 2021 class is now closed.


conrad voorsanger

Conrad Voorsanger

Partner, Operations

The House Fund

Conrad is a Bay Area original and Silicon Valley technology veteran with broad business-building experience from executive roles at McKinsey & Company, SuccessFactors, SAP, and Benefitter. As a consultant with McKinsey & Company, Conrad worked with world’s largest businesses on digital transformation programs, including helping a top-3 retailer build differentiating digital capabilities to compete in a quickly changing market. Before McKinsey, Conrad was an early executive at SuccessFactors, where he drove the SaaS HR company’s strategy and new product portfolio, resulting in a blockbuster IPO, and the company’s subsequent sale to SAP for $3.4 billion. Conrad is an entrepreneur and investor; he co-founded Benefitter (sold to HealthMarkets), and invested in Directr (sold to YouTube), Huddler (sold to Wikia) and other startups. At SAP, Conrad worked in the Office of the CEO shaping corporate strategy. In keeping with The House Fund’s tradition of engaging UC Berkeley alumni, Conrad earned his MBA from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, where he focused his studies on innovation and management of technology. Conrad earned his undergraduate degree in Product Design Engineering from Stanford University.


jeremy fiance

Jeremy Fiance

Managing Partner

The House Fund

Jeremy started The House Fund in 2016 after graduating from UC Berkeley. There, Jeremy proved the campus' startup potential, co-launching several initiatives, including Kairos Society Berkeley and Free Ventures, student groups that increase access to entrepreneurial resources, which sparked over 50 startups that raised $50M by the time he graduated. Universities have always been inspirational to Jeremy Fiance as profound places for ideas to feed off each other and inspire new thinking –– and UC Berkeley in particular. From the Free Speech Movement in the 60s, to the twenty-two nobel prizes, to discoveries like the cyclotron. Berkeley has always been pushing the edge of what’s possible in today’s world. With that in mind, Jeremy is dedicated to strengthening Berkeley's startup community and equipping Berkeley founders with the tools needed to build great businesses, and keep the community strong and thriving.

View current and previous class offerings of Advanced Topics in Entrepreneurship & Innovation.

Refer to our Courses page for a full list of SCET courses and current class offerings

and our Certificate page for more information on our Certificate in Entrepreneurship & Technology.


Contact SCET Academic Program Manager Michelle Lee at for additional questions.