Our Team

Vinit Nijhawan
Interim Executive Director

vnijhawan@umassp.edu

Vinit was Managing Director at UnitedLex focused on academic IP commercialization. Vinit was Managing Director, Office of Technology Development at Boston University where he launched 8 venture-backed spinoffs and successfully executed a patent monetization program. Vinit teaches MBA courses on Entrepreneurship at BU Questrom School of Business, over 450 students have taken his courses. Vinit has over 30 years experience building five startups: as CEO of three, five were acquired. Vinit was Venture Partner at Key Venture Partners and his one investment was acquired for $430M. Vinit is an advisor and board member to several technology startups and was a Mass High Tech All-Star in 2005. Vinit has participated in over 240 panel discussions and paper presentations, and was a Board Member of Mass Ventures, an early stage, quasi-public Massachusetts venture capital firm, a co-founder of EdTech Accelerator/Incubator LearnLaunch, ex-President of Massachusetts Association of Technology Transfer Offices and co-founder of Waterloo Alumni Angels. Vinit is also serving or has served on non-profit boards of VentureCafe Foundation, National Academy of Inventors, TiE Global. Vinit earned a B.A.Sc in electrical engineering from the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada.

Susan Ahern
Director of MassVX                     

sahern@umassp.edu

Susan is a successful and diplomatic builder of innovative international and statewide programs, stakeholders, and innovators.  Susan also is co-founder of 4 companies.

Susan leads MassVX, a new and innovative statewide program designed to enable Massachusetts to lead the nation in translating basic research to the market.  MassVX expedites academic spinouts by efficiently matching vetted Entrepreneurial Champions with selected academic-innovators from all 34 Massachusetts academic and research institutions.  We’re moving beyond mentoring.

Prior to joining MTTC, Susan led Canada’s first international business development accelerator in Boston.  As a Trade Commissioner with the Consulate General of Canada in Boston, Susan managed the operations and strategic planning of the award-winning international Canadian Technology Accelerator in Boston; achieved a $90 Million return for the federal government; and initiated a Corporate Partner Program valued at $15 Million for her entrepreneurs.  During this time and as a co-founder of the Canadian Mentoring Service, Susan collaborated with 100 C-level Boston-based Canadian executives and was the primary liaison with 500 national and international entrepreneurial stakeholders. Susan strategically designed and executed high-intensity international business development programs to 350 fast growing entrepreneurs in technology, life sciences, healthcare, robotics and the food industries. 

Susan earned a BA in business administration from Colby College in Waterville, ME.

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