Fund Your Idea

Explore Your Funding Options

Great ideas need fuel to become realized. That’s where funding comes in. Wake Forest Innovations works directly with you, the inventor, to obtain internal and external sources of funding to help advance projects through development and commercialization milestones, such as market research, advanced prototyping, safety testing and preclinical or clinical proof-of-concept testing.

Internal Funding

Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center is committed to supporting a culture of innovation among faculty and staff. That’s why Wake Forest Innovations has created several internal sources of funding.

Commercialization Pathway Awards

Commercialization Pathway Awards, which are generally awarded in amounts between $5,000 to $20,000, are intended to advance projects through initial ideation and development stages.

Wake Forest Innovations provides Commercialization Pathway Awards based on an assessment of the unmet medical need a technology addresses and the commercial potential of the end product, a process guided by advice from key opinion leaders, including industry experts.

Catalyst Fund

The Catalyst Fund is a $15-million technology development program created by Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center to accelerate the development of innovative life science technologies invented by its faculty and staff. Wake Forest Innovations supports and facilitates the Catalyst Fund, which is managed by Pappas Capital, a leading life science investment firm in Durham, North Carolina.

Wake Forest Innovations and a steering committee of leading scientists and industry experts provide advice on investment decisions by the Catalyst Fund.

Learn more about the Catalyst Fund.

External Funding

When funding by the Catalyst Fund or other internal sources are not the best fit for a project, we will work with you to identify potential funding opportunities outside of Wake Forest Baptist, such as:

How to Get Started

If you are faculty or staff of Wake Forest Baptist or Wake Forest University and have an idea or an invention with the potential to solve a medical problem, your first step is to let us know about it. Please complete the idea submission form below and a member of our team will contact you about next steps.
  • Classify Your Idea
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Want to Discuss Funding?

Do you want to discuss funding opportunities? Reach out to us at or +1.336.713.1111. If you already have a project underway with us then you should connect directly with your case manager through our team directory.