Enterprise Innovation Institute

Deep Tech Coaches

About Us

ScaleUp Lab offers revolutionary content that enables startups to commercialize technologies, attract investment, and move from search to scale. Mentor Studio establishes a mentor pool with systematic mentoring procedures to boost start-ups through scale-up and successful market launch. These combined efforts will become the new standard for moving high-potential ventures from incubation to acceleration to market penetration. It contains the vital blocking and tackling that start-ups need to advance beyond a business model canvas and product-market fit.

Nakia Melecio

Senior Deep Tech Catalyst

Nakia Melecio

Director of The Center
for MedTech Excellence

Nakia’s Hours:
ATDC Headquarters
Tuesday – Thursday 10:00am – 11:30pm

Nakia helps researchers commercialize their biotechnology, energy, defense, military technology, education, government technology, and aerospace. He also helps them secure investments from a network of federally funded laboratories, universities, and corporations. He has worked with industry, academia, and government throughout his career. As a result, Nakia has a unique and deep understanding of the early-stage innovation ecosystem and technology transfer, proven scientific and technical expertise, and decades of operational experience in technology-driven, high-growth companies. He has successfully helped startups and developed businesses worldwide in the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, Nigeria, and Ghana.

Nakia’s passion as a business advisor, deep-tech, deep-science mentor, and startup coach inspires and helps entrepreneurs and startups spin out of university research. A seasoned entrepreneur, Nakia allows entrepreneurs to execute their ideas while guiding them in the total startup journey — from product development and selling to the government, to their go-to-market strategy and customer discovery, to scaling a company and getting capital. He has worked with more than 700 startups worldwide, with more than 15,000 hours of classroom time working with entrepreneurs.

Nakia is an active member and mentor of the technology community and a frequent contributor to numerous business organizations, including the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). He is a longtime technology startup mentor, having served in that role at the:

    • Advanced Technology Development Center at the Georgia Institute of Technology
    • The National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (NSF I-Corps) National Instructor
    • The Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM)
    • Georgia Tech Create-X mentor
    • MIT Hack Medicine
    • Department of Defense lab mentor
    • NSF I-Corps Faculty Instructor at Georgia Tech
    • Hack for Defense Instructor (H4D)
    • Defense Innovation Accelerator Mentor (DIA)
    • StartMe at Emory University


He also has a deep understanding of SBIR-STTR. He has been intimately involved with many new emerging growth technologies, including government, universities, and corporate innovation. He is a board member for several startups and is involved in two health-tech medical device startups, which are being actively funded by SBIR Phase I NIH and SBIR Phase I NSF grants.

Nakia has a master’s degree in education, teaching, learning, and educational technology; a bachelor’s degree in psychology; and a bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Science. He also has a doctorate degree in psychology, educational psychology, and educational leadership.