Gift from Pantas Sutardja and Ting Chuk renames the Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology

Berkeley Engineering’s Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology celebrated its 10-year anniversary today (April 21, 2015) by announcing a generous gift from Pantas Sutardja and Ting Chuk that will help hundreds more students invent products, start companies and chart their course as industry innovators.

Global technology entrepreneurs themselves, the benefactors, both graduates of Berkeley Engineering, added a challenge grant to encourage matching gifts to the renamed Pantas and Ting Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology.

“We are profoundly grateful to Pantas and Ting for investing in the aspirations of our students,” said S. Shankar Sastry, Dean and Carlson Professor of Engineering. “Their generosity will magnify the impact of our students’ career paths by fostering entrepreneurial practice and by translating technological expertise into marketplace innovation.”

Built from a single course in 2005 to a robust program of courses and lectures that now serve more than 1,000 students each semester, the Sutardja Center claims dozens of student startups among its successes. Among them is Eko Devices, which recently closed a $2 million funding round for its digital stethoscope attachment.

Berkeley Engineering faculty Ikhlaq Sidhu and Ken Singer, along with Phil Kaminsky, chair of the Industrial Engineering & Operations Research Department and the Sutardja Center’s faculty director, designed the center’s “Berkeley Method of Entrepreneurship” to teach students how to launch and sustain technology ventures. The curriculum, lauded as a national model by the National Science Foundation, uses game-based learning to encourage an entrepreneurial mindset.

The new gift will extend the Sutardja Center’s course offerings to a broader range of students, from first-year undergraduates to graduate students. The gift will also open up the Sutardja Center’s Venture Lab incubator to more student-led initiatives.

Pantas Sutardja (B.S. ’83, M.S.’85, Ph.D. ’88 EECS) is cofounder of Marvell Technology Group, a semiconductor company with operations worldwide. Ting Chuk (B.S. ’85 EECS) was a design engineer at Rockwell and Xerox, among other companies. The two are active in the life of the College of Engineering and were cornerstone benefactors to CITRIS (the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society), a multi-campus institute headquartered at Berkeley Engineering. Their two sons are currently undergraduate students in the college.

“We heard about the CET program and were so curious to learn more about it that we sat in on one of their classes,” said Pantas Sutardja. “We were very impressed with the enthusiasm of all the students and their ability to articulate and present their projects. Berkeley has such strong academic credentials. We hope that our support will enable more Berkeley students to take what they learn here and create a culture of innovation wherever they go.”

For more information about the Pantas and Ting Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology, visit cet.berkeley.edu.