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Our Story


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Our Story


The Basement, UC San Diego Innovation

The Basement provides innovation space, mentorship and resources in support of UC San Diego's innovation and entrepreneurial focus. Alumni-founded, The Basement was launched in 2015 with the support of Jeff and Kim Belk '83, Forecast Ventures, Aryeh Bourkoff '95, LionTree LLC, and Mark Suster '91 of Upfront Ventures. In the spirit of UC San Diego's entrepreneurial DNA, The Basement brings together students, and alumni, ideas and inspiration, earnest ambition, and real-world experience. Student entrepreneurs can gather and be nurtured, and with alumni support and visionary leadership, they can grow companies and social innovation ventures that become the fabric of our community, creating jobs and inspiring a culture of ingenuity and impact with help from The Basement. All university students – regardless of college or department affiliation can access the resource. Community-facing workshops and programs offered by The Basement provide opportunities for alumni and community members to get involved.


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OUR Mission


OUR Mission


 

Moving Big Ideas Forward.

The Basement’s mission is to stimulate, encourage and serve the entrepreneurial spirit of UC San Diego students by providing a co-work and incubation space. It is a campus-wide resource managed by the UC San Diego Alumni office with involvement from alumni and community leaders. The Basement works closely with Research Affairs through its Office of Innovation and Commercialization to structure and offer programming that serves the UC San Diego innovation and entrepreneurial community.

 
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Visionary Leaders


Visionary Leaders


Jeffrey Belk, B.A. ’83 Economics

Jeff is managing director of Forecast Ventures, focused on developing and guiding global growth opportunities in the information and communication technology space. Belk spent nearly 14 years at Qualcomm Inc., where he served as senior vice president of strategy and market development. He currently serves on the board of directors for Peregrine, Interdigital Corporation, as well as the Wireless Life Sciences Alliances. He earned an M.B.A. from UC Irvine.

 

If you get kids involved in an entrepreneurial mindset, if you get them to learn how to collaborate better, if you get them to learn how to use tools to present themselves, there are going to be two outcomes to The Basement: one, companies are going to flourish, and two they will create real jobs
— Kim and Jeffrey Belk

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Aryeh B. Bourkoff, B.A. ’95 Economics

Aryeh is founder and the Chief Executive Officer of LionTree LLC, an independent investment bank based in New York City. Previously, he served as vice chairman and head of Americas Investment Banking at UBS where he held a seat on UBS's global Investment Banking Executive Committee. Before joining UBS, he served as a high- yield research analyst at CIBC World Markets from 1997-99 and Smith Barney from 1995-97. Bourkoff is a director on the boards of select private companies.

 

At the time I was at UC San Diego, there was not really talk of launching new ideas beyond research and sciences. The Basement will create some real utility and benefit for the students. Going forward in launching new businesses out of the university is very exciting.
— Aryeh B. Bourkoff

Mark Suster, B.A. ’91 Economics and Political Science

Mark is a partner at Upfront Ventures, a venture capital firm that backed both of his previous startups. Before joining Upfront, Suster was Vice President, Product Management at Salesforce.com following its acquisition of Koral, which he was the CEO of and founded. He was also the founder and CEO of BuildOnline, a European SaaS company that was acquired by SWORD Group. He received an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago.

 

Imagine if you had three more Qualcomms in town-how much that would add to the community. The most amazing entrepreneurs would stay here and build local jobs here.
— Mark Suster

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Armin Afsahi, B.A. ’90 Communication

Armin is the vice chancellor for advancement the University of Denver where he inspires a progressive vision for university advancement, and provides leadership for the university’s global engagement and philanthropy programs. He previously served as the associate vice chancellor for Alumni and Community Engagement at UC San Diego, and chief alumni officer and executive director for the UCSD Alumni Board of Directors (2007-2015). He is a seasoned advancement professional with more than 20 years of private and public sector experience. He received a bachelor of arts degree in communication from UC San Diego’s Revelle College, and an M.B.A. from the University of San Diego.

 
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The Basement Advisory


The Basement Advisory


Armin Afsahi '90 Vice Chancellor, Advancement, University of Denver

Armin Afsahi '90
Vice Chancellor, Advancement,
University of Denver

Aryeh Bourkoff '95 Founder & CEO, LionTree LLC

Aryeh Bourkoff '95
Founder & CEO, LionTree LLC

Mike Hayden '15 CEO, 2014-2015 Entrepreneur Challenge at UC San Diego

Mike Hayden '15
CEO, 2014-2015
Entrepreneur Challenge at UC San Diego

Gloria Negrete Basement Relations & Advancement, Director,  Alumni & Community Engagement, UC San Diego

Gloria Negrete
Basement Relations & Advancement, Director,  Alumni & Community Engagement,
UC San Diego

Mark Suster '91 Partner, Upfront Ventures

Mark Suster '91
Partner, Upfront Ventures

Steph Barry '94 Assistant Vice Chancellor,  Alumni & Community Engagement, UC San Diego

Steph Barry '94
Assistant Vice Chancellor, 
Alumni & Community Engagement, UC San Diego

Dr. Rajesh Grover Assistant Professor, The Scripps Research Institute

Dr. Rajesh Grover
Assistant Professor,
The Scripps Research Institute

Greg Horowitt '80 Co-Founder, Director, T2 Venture Capital

Greg Horowitt '80
Co-Founder, Director, T2 Venture Capital

Allison Long Pettine '04 Founder & President, Crescent Ridge Partners

Allison Long Pettine '04
Founder & President,
Crescent Ridge Partners

Jeffrey Belk ’83 Managing Director, ICT 168 Capital

Jeffrey Belk ’83
Managing Director,
ICT 168 Capital

Dr. Rajesh Gupta Chair & Professor, UC San Diego Computer Science and Engineering

Dr. Rajesh Gupta
Chair & Professor,
UC San Diego Computer Science and Engineering

Jordan Hudson Principal, Upfront Ventures

Jordan Hudson
Principal, Upfront Ventures

Dr. Lada Rasochova '08 Executive Director, Institute for Innovation and Development, Rady School of Management

Dr. Lada Rasochova '08
Executive Director,
Institute for Innovation and Development, Rady School of Management

Ezekiel Bottorff '16 CEO, 2015-2016 Entrepreneur Challenge at UC San Diego

Ezekiel Bottorff '16
CEO, 2015-2016
Entrepreneur Challenge at UC San Diego

Taner Halicioglu '96 Angel Investor & Lecturer, UC San Diego Computer Science and Engineering

Taner Halicioglu '96
Angel Investor & Lecturer,
UC San Diego Computer Science and Engineering

Adam Judd Media & Tech, LionTree LLC

Adam Judd
Media & Tech, LionTree LLC

Dr. Paul Roben Associate Vice Chancellor, Office for Innovation and Commercialization, UC San Diego

Dr. Paul Roben
Associate Vice Chancellor,
Office for Innovation and Commercialization, UC San Diego

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AFFILIATES


AFFILIATES